STrib: Proctor HS football season canceled amid 'serious misconduct' investigation

A_Slab_of_Bacon

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Maybe I'm being Mr Obvious here, but why doesn't every coach sit his players down every year and say "look, we do NOT do these kind of acts. We have NO tolerance whatsoever."
I'm guessing they do.

Wouldn't be surprised if that's a requirement by an number of orgs, the school, district, mn sports orgs... but I suspect there's plenty of folks out there whose attitude is "lol whatever, can't tell me what to do!" when it comes to those things.
 

MNVCGUY

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Maybe I'm being Mr Obvious here, but why doesn't every coach sit his players down every year and say "look, we do NOT do these kind of acts. We have NO tolerance whatsoever."
Sadly there are probably some "old school" types that tolerate it because again it is "tradition". But I am sure the coaches aren't around when it is happening and therefore they can pretend they don't know what the players are doing.

I am sure there are many coaches out there that have made it clear to their teams that this kind of behavior has no place in their program, but that won't be the case everywhere.
 

HitMeAgainIAmStillMoving

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Maybe I'm being Mr Obvious here, but why doesn't every coach sit his players down every year and say "look, we do NOT do these kind of acts. We have NO tolerance whatsoever."
Not a big Jon Gruden fan but he did that with the Raiders. It should be day one, two, and three. How stupid is it to be mean to people and say its a good idea.
 

Vandy

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Sadly there are probably some "old school" types that tolerate it because again it is "tradition". But I am sure the coaches aren't around when it is happening and therefore they can pretend they don't know what the players are doing.

I am sure there are many coaches out there that have made it clear to their teams that this kind of behavior has no place in their program, but that won't be the case everywhere.
No 'old school" traditionalist would condone what took place in this instance....
 

MNVCGUY

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No 'old school" traditionalist would condone what took place in this instance....
As someone else mentioned this probably isn't the first time this has happened in Proctor it is just the first time it has been made public.

Nobody anywhere should condone assault/violence of any kind in the name of "team building" but it still happens.
 



Replacement Gopher

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One of my favorite books is "The Better Angels of Our Nature" and across 850 pages it makes an incredible case about how these are in fact not the scariest, most depraved, most dangerous times to live in - as the majority of Americans believe.

No humans on Earth have ever been safer or more well protected than those living in the developed world today. Punishments we used to stand in the public square and cheer for are considered beyond the pale now. A human today is about 1/1000 as likely to die of violence as their counterpart a couple centuries ago. Our standards have radically changed, and that's good. But it can go overboard.

I have no idea what happened at Proctor but if a few guys on varsity taped some kid to a goalpost in a classic prank and they canceled the entire program for the entire season, across all grade levels...wow.

Support discipline to the fullest reasonable extent for those involved. I'm sure 99% of the kids found out through some email and were not there. Same with the coach who is now probably professionally and socially ruined because he couldn't be there 24/7 watching 100+ high school kids. Peak 2021.
If what happened to this kid, happened to mine, and you did it, you would be lucky to have middle age punishment meted out by me.

I would go full Babylonian on not only the perpetrator, but their family, their friends, their pets, their neighbors, their teachers, their church, etc.
 


A_Slab_of_Bacon

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I don’t know if true, but have seen a few places that the victim may be LGBT.
One of those things I can about imagine could be just as likely to be true as ... some rando would spread such a rumor too... for their own reasons.
 



BleedGopher

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STrib: In the wake of high school football investigation, northern Minnesota town of Proctor reels

In this small, tight-knit northern Minnesota town bisected by railroad tracks, most everyone has a connection to its schools — and one another. Residents turn out for hockey games, a popular summer festival celebrating the city's rich railroad history and Friday night football under the lights.

But when allegations of student misconduct involving the school's football team surfaced last week, the typically chatty town of 3,000 locked down, many residents afraid to speak publicly about their fears and worries. School employees and students were told to stay silent, the school board banished public comment about the situation at a meeting this week and district officials and local police remain mum about even the most basic investigative details, all amid the cancellation of the entire football season.

It is the second serious allegation involving Proctor schools within five weeks.

In late August, Todd R. Clark, the former high school basketball coach and a middle school teacher, was charged with first- and third-degree criminal sexual conduct for allegedly sexually assaulting one of his 15-year-old female students. A criminal complaint documents a potential suicide attempt shortly after his police interview. For locals it was reminiscent of a decade ago, when a Proctor math teacher died by suicide as he was investigated for alleged sexual misconduct.

"It makes me uncomfortable knowing my siblings are in that school," said 2016 Proctor graduate Stephen Carlsness, because he sees a culture that appears to ignore behavior that ranges from inappropriate to criminal.

"And nothing is being done," he said.

With minor children involved in an ongoing investigation, it's understandable some things can't be shared, said Amanda Fitzsimmons, mom to three students in Proctor schools. But the silence has led to rampant rumors, and the school district isn't doing anything to reassure parents that their kids are safe at school with their classmates, coaches and teachers, she said.

"The rumors are serious enough that the school should be able to tell us [at least] that they are safe," she said. "We just had a teacher charged with criminal sexual conduct. I think we deserve more than 'misconduct took place in our school.' I think it would calm rumors if they said … people will be held accountable."

In a vacuum of verified information, the town reels and wonders: How many students were involved? Are they still attending class? When did the coach know, and how did he handle it? Are children safe in Proctor schools?

Wild rumors swirl through social media, frightening community members and enraging people throughout the state. A small crowd gathered outside the school earlier this week, one person with a sign that read, "We must protect our kids." Superintendent John Engelking announced the cancellation of the remainder of the football season Wednesday to give the investigation its "due diligence." His statement acknowledged "alleged serious misconduct" and said substantiated misconduct within the football program would be addressed.

'This is all they have'​

Todd Becker's son plays on the Proctor football team. Becker is saddened and shocked by the allegations, he said, which don't mesh with the culture he's experienced as a parent of a player.

Ending the season is "devastating" for team members not involved in the incident, especially after the chaos of the COVID-19 pandemic.

"For some of these kids, this is all they have," he said.

Proctor student Lilly Rich said she would have been disappointed had the district not canceled the season.

"I think it sends the right message," she said, noting that many students don't agree with the broad punishment.

But the combination of scandals in such a short time is "stressful" for students, back in school daily for the first time in more than a year, she said.

"We're hearing about it all the time, in hallways, at lunch, in classrooms," Rich said. "Everyone at school has been really down."

Frustrated by the social media melee, a football player posted on his public Facebook page last week that he is "embarrassed to wear anything that represents the team that I have been proud to be with since I first started."

"The entire team is embarrassed right now and we're all just trying to get through this tough time," he wrote. "We have members of the community and friends who have supported us for years making stuff up and talking bad about everyone on the team, when most of us didn't know about it/have anything to do with it."

The Proctor Police Department said the investigation would likely not conclude this week, leaving residents with questions.

Dick Kari, a Proctor graduate who has owned the Powerhouse bar in town for more than two decades, was chatting with customers perched at the popular tavern's expansive bar recently. He said the allegations related to both the football program and the charged teacher "reflect poorly on the town."

"You know people here," he said. "When something like this happens, you wonder why? How?"


Go Gophers!!
 

Dano564

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I'm guessing the coach or coaches do the "half hearted" speech that there's not hazing leaving it perfectly well known that he's going to conveniently be absent at an event or specific times where this crap can take place.

What a mess.

I was part of a fraternity where hazing was phased out or very recently phased out prior to me being there.
The oldest seniors still complained about it, about how the fraternity would fail because there wouldn't be that "bond", but by the time they were out, no one thought anything of it that hazing had gone away.
 

VolitileGopher

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One of my favorite books is "The Better Angels of Our Nature" and across 850 pages it makes an incredible case about how these are in fact not the scariest, most depraved, most dangerous times to live in - as the majority of Americans believe.

No humans on Earth have ever been safer or more well protected than those living in the developed world today. Punishments we used to stand in the public square and cheer for are considered beyond the pale now. A human today is about 1/1000 as likely to die of violence as their counterpart a couple centuries ago. Our standards have radically changed, and that's good. But it can go overboard.

I have no idea what happened at Proctor but if a few guys on varsity taped some kid to a goalpost in a classic prank and they canceled the entire program for the entire season, across all grade levels...wow.

Support discipline to the fullest reasonable extent for those involved. I'm sure 99% of the kids found out through some email and were not there. Same with the coach who is now probably professionally and socially ruined because he couldn't be there 24/7 watching 100+ high school kids. Peak 2021.
Not for nothing. This wasn't a tape a guy to the goalpost hazing. It sounds like someone was bound and sexually assaulted as part of a team activity. That's a felony. The question just becomes who doesn't get charged with a felony? How many knew what was happening. How many directly participated? How many refused to help the victim(s)? They all should go to jail. Period.

Classic diffusion of responsibility situation. The team members looked to others to stop it. They looked the other way and let it happen. If the team culture says "this is ok"...then, yeah. Shut it down.
 

fmlizard

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Not for nothing. This wasn't a tape a guy to the goalpost hazing. It sounds like someone was bound and sexually assaulted as part of a team activity. That's a felony. The question just becomes who doesn't get charged with a felony? How many knew what was happening. How many directly participated? How many refused to help the victim(s)? They all should go to jail. Period.

Classic diffusion of responsibility situation. The team members looked to others to stop it. They looked the other way and let it happen. If the team culture says "this is ok"...then, yeah. Shut it down.

Sorry, I jumped to conclusions earlier and assumed an earlier post about a goalpost taping was what happened. My mistake.
 



Replacement Gopher

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Not for nothing. This wasn't a tape a guy to the goalpost hazing. It sounds like someone was bound and sexually assaulted as part of a team activity. That's a felony. The question just becomes who doesn't get charged with a felony? How many knew what was happening. How many directly participated? How many refused to help the victim(s)? They all should go to jail. Period.

Classic diffusion of responsibility situation. The team members looked to others to stop it. They looked the other way and let it happen. If the team culture says "this is ok"...then, yeah. Shut it down.
I would sue everyone. If you received the video or saw it on social media, and didn’t immediately inform the cops I’d sue you.
 

btowngopher

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Maybe I'm being Mr Obvious here, but why doesn't every coach sit his players down every year and say "look, we do NOT do these kind of acts. We have NO tolerance whatsoever."
Pretty sad players would need to be told this, but apparently you might be right. Hopefully they’d listen.
 



Ewert86PC

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Maybe I'm being Mr Obvious here, but why doesn't every coach sit his players down every year and say "look, we do NOT do these kind of acts. We have NO tolerance whatsoever."
Because things that happened 45 years ago, keep happening.
 

Bob_Loblaw

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Because things that happened 45 years ago, keep happening.
Do you really think when people are talking about typical hazing of HS students they are talking about what happened at Proctor? This is simply just sexual assault and I can't even begin to wrap my head around how anyone would think that was even close to okay.

I just think this is such an extreme example that insinuating this is tolerated by outdate coaches, or that this even falls into the category of hazing is way off. Frankly, if "hazing" could range from taping someone to a goal post to brutal sexual assault, the word is simply not precise enough to have any meaning.
 

bsce97

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I had a friend that belonged to a large football program down in AZ that was nationally recognized. He said this type of hazing was common place and expected and was passed down year after year. Any freshman that couldn't make JV or Varsity was considered open game. Point is, my guess is this isn't the first time it has happened in Proctor, just the first time it has gone public. My guess is incidents like this happen more than people want to admit.
For a sport that is seen as hyper-masculine, I can't for the life of me figure out why hazing so often includes foreign objects and sodomy. It is beyond bizarre.
 
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bsce97

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Do you really think when people are talking about typical hazing of HS students they are talking about what happened at Proctor? This is simply just sexual assault and I can't even begin to wrap my head around how anyone would think that was even close to okay.

I just think this is such an extreme example that insinuating this is tolerated by outdate coaches, or that this even falls into the category of hazing is way off. Frankly, if "hazing" could range from taping someone to a goal post to brutal sexual assault, the word is simply not precise enough to have any meaning.
When I played HS football, as a freshman, the seniors didn't do any stupid crap like that. Instead, our "hazing" was funny and good-natured stuff. The best one I remember is during 2-a-days, freshman and sophomores were given carrying assignments - as in we had to carry their gear to and from the practice field. You cringed when you got a lineman's stuff in 90 degree humid weather. Sometimes, they would want us to try and carry them atop our shoulders to and from the practice field. I don't think we ever successfully transported a guy all the way, but we laughed our asses off trying.
 

Bob_Loblaw

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When I played HS football, as a freshman, the seniors didn't do any stupid crap like that. Instead, our "hazing" was funny and good-natured stuff. The best one I remember is during 2-a-days, freshman and sophomores were given carrying assignments - as in we had to carry their gear to and from the practice field. You cringed when you got a lineman's stuff in 90 degree humid weather. Sometimes, they would want us to try and carry them atop our shoulders to and from the practice field. I don't think we ever successfully transported a guy all the way, but we laughed our asses off trying.
Yep, that's the type of stuff I remember. That and like the FR has to sing the school song sometimes at embarrassing times. That was pretty much it, funny, good natured, not threatening type of stuff.
 

ForecastingAWin

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Sorry, I jumped to conclusions earlier and assumed an earlier post about a goalpost taping was what happened. My mistake.
Thank you for owning up to your comments that were quite poor in taste. Rape and sexual assault are far more common than most people know. And its sad how often people dismiss it or make light of these situations like saying its just a prank or "goalpost taping" like you did. Before commenting, make sure you know what happened and remember there are people out there who are real victims.
 
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bsce97

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Yep, that's the type of stuff I remember. That and like the FR has to sing the school song sometimes at embarrassing times. That was pretty much it, funny, good natured, not threatening type of stuff.
Oh yes, the singing was also a frequent "request". :)
 

Ogee Oglethorpe

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Yep, that's the type of stuff I remember. That and like the FR has to sing the school song sometimes at embarrassing times. That was pretty much it, funny, good natured, not threatening type of stuff.
Yikes. I remember that where I played in school. Before the rest of the students got to campus, had to sing the fight song from whatever HS you came from while standing on a chair in the cafeteria. Harmless enough, and yet inexplicably there were always a handful of Fresh who were to tough or too much of a rebel to comply and just get it done and over with; most of those ended up singing with their shorts up to their chest and/or maybe some celery sticks or cherry tomatoes stuffed up their nose. I never understood why you wouldn't just sing the damn song.
 


laazrakit

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Maybe I'm being Mr Obvious here, but why doesn't every coach sit his players down every year and say "look, we do NOT do these kind of acts. We have NO tolerance whatsoever."
I'd be willing to guess that the "Next" Proctor football coach will do this...
 

GoldenRodents

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Flood their brains with porn and violent video games, and then see what happens.
 

Dances With Gophers

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Flood their brains with porn and violent video games, and then see what happens.
because people haven't been acting like a$$holes before the advent of published porn and video games.

gotcha. don't forget to blame rap music, hoodies, and social media apps.

oh noes! my poor child had no idea that inserting a plunger into another person's anus was wrong! BLAME THE [porn/videogames/rapmusic/socialmediaapps]!!!

362177.jpg
 





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