Speaking today in the lobby of the Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex, Tracy Claeys told staffers and onlookers how thankful he was for the opportunity to serve as the 29th head coach of Minnesota, and said he feels he left something important behind.
“I wouldn’t be standing before you today if it weren’t for the fact that I Ieft my keys in the top right drawer of the head coach’s desk, pretty near the back,” Claeys said. “If somebody could go check and see if they’re still there, that’d be great.”
Claeys, who went 11-8 overall and 6-8 in conference as the Gophers’ head coach, told those present that unlike his keys, he would not soon forget them.
“The relationships we forged were unique and special, and cannot be duplicated,” said Claeys, “unlike the key to my shed, which I have several copies of hidden around.”
The former Holiday and Quick Lane Bowl winner insisted he wasn’t coming back to Minnesota’s football office for a “victory lap,” but rather, to tie up a few loose ends with his former football family.
“There should also be a camo pocket knife in that drawer that would be nice to get back,” said Claeys, adding, “If not, no problem.”
Asked how he’d gone so long without retrieving his keys, Claeys replied that his wife had a spare set “for most of the important stuff.”
“But,” he admitted, “we got a boat anchored on Lake Harriet that’s gone pretty much unused all summer, and the only key to it is on that fob. I wouldn’t mind getting her out once or twice before Labor Day.”
Told that nothing could be done to retrieve his keys until Athletic Director Mark Coyle got back from lunch, Claeys replied, “Hey, I’ll wait.”
“Ain’t got much else going on today,” he added.