Reggie Lynch Denies Sexual Assault Allegations, Requests Appeal Amid Suspension

Reggie Lynch Denies Sexual Assault Allegations, Requests Appeal Amid Suspension

Reggie Lynch Denies Sexual Assault Allegations, Requests Appeal Amid Suspension

Attorney Ryan Pacyga said Wednesday Lynch has appealed both rulings and requested a panel review.

"Right now what [Lynch] is most concerned about is that he truly feels like he is being falsely accused and he's in a situation where how do you clear your name other than saying, 'No I didn't", Pacyga said.

"Reggie Lynch is in the fight of his life due to the current climate of sexual harassment and sexual assault investigations", Pacyga said.

Pacyga said the university's burden of proof is lower in student disciplinary proceedings than it is in criminal cases, which makes the allegations harder to defend against.

Lynch, however, has already filed notice that he will appeal the recommendations to the Student Sexual Misconduct Subcommittee (SSMS). Pacyga said the allegation resulting in a suspension recommendation involves digital penetration, while the allegation resulting in the expulsion recommendation involves forced intercourse and oral sex.

Lynch won the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year last season and was a primary member of the frontcourt rotation again this season before these findings were publicized.

Pacyga wouldn't provide details but called it a "she said, he said" situation made more hard because the allegations were made months after the incidents and key evidence is no longer available. Pacyga said Lynch declined to travel for the Gophers' game against Northwestern Wednesday at 8 p.m., but a University spokesperson said Lynch did not have a choice.

"My experience when I walk into a court room in these sorts of cases is that your average juror naturally and instinctively wants to rush to protect the accuser or the victim", Pacyga said.

Lynch has appealed the findings from the two April 2016 incidents, the first of which he was arrested for.

Athletes are automatically suspended during criminal investigations, but the athletic director and the coach have discretion on whether to suspend an athlete during or after an EOAA investigation. Law enforcement could have come in and collected the bedding, could have had the accuser do a sexual assault exam where she would have DNA swabs done and they would test for DNA and semen.

Asked whether he considered Lynch a victim, Pacyga paused. "Reggie Lynch has been robbed of that opportunity".

The Edina, Minn., native practiced with the team on Monday.

Lynch transferred to the Gophers after two years at Illinois State before the 2015-16 season.