Photo: Tom Olmscheid/Associated Press

Three football players who were recommended for suspensions as part of a University of Minnesota sexual assault investigation have had those punishments overturned, lawyers for the players announced yesterday. After this latest round of appeals, so far four of the five recommended expulsions in the case have been upheld, with the fifth reduced to a one-year suspension. But now, all four suspensions and the one recommendation for probation have been overturned.

Last year, a student reported that she had been sexually assaulted by multiple football players after the 2016 season opener. Both law enforcement and the university investigated. Prosecutors said twice that they did not bring charges because it wasn’t a winnable criminal case. After its own investigation, the university’s office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action recommended that five players be expelled, four be suspended for a year, and one be put on probation. A series of appeals followed—first to a three-person panel and then, in some cases, to university provost Karen Hanson—with the most recent results being announced yesterday.

Here is is how they break down, player by player, based on what’s been reported so far by the Star Tribune and the Pioneer Press:

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  • Ray Buford—EOAA recommended expulsion, upheld by the three-person panel.
  • Carlton Djam—EOAA recommended expulsion, reduced to a one-year suspension by the three-person panel.
  • Seth Green—EOAA recommended a one-year suspension, overturned by the three-person panel.
  • KiAnte Hardin—EOAA recommended expulsion, upheld by the three-person panel. Hardin appealed to the provost, who upheld the panel’s decision.
  • Dior Johnson—EOAA recommended expulsion, upheld by the three-person panel.
  • Tamarion Johnson—EOAA recommended expulsion, upheld by the three-person panel.
  • Kobe McCrary—EOAA recommended a one-year suspension, overturned by the three-person panel. The woman appealed the panel’s decision to the provost, who upheld it.
  • Antonio Shenault—EOAA recommended probation, overturned by the three-person panel.
  • Mark Williams—EOAA recommended one-year suspension, upheld by the three-person panel. Williams appealed to the provost, who overturned their decision.
  • Antoine Winfield Jr.—EOAA recommended a one-year suspension, overturned by the three-person panel. The woman appealed the panel’s decision to the provost, who upheld it.

The team announced yesterday that the five cleared players were being reinstated to the team. For any other players who might want to continue appealing, lawyer Ryan Pacyga told the Pioneer Press, the next step would be taking their cases to federal court. The paper reported that Pacyga said that step was “being considered as a possible next step for multiple players.”

Of the expelled players, three are with a new school: Buford, Dior Johnson, and Tamarion Johnson have transferred to Arizona Western Community College.