May 07, 2016

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) The University of Missouri's softball players say they're playing in protest of an internal investigation they say focuses on the program and its coaches.

The Columbia Daily Tribune (http://bit.ly/1OieL89 ) says the team announced in a statement Saturday it would play that day's home game against South Carolina under protest.

Without detailing possible reasons for the investigation, the statement said the inquiry by the school's athletic department is ''wholly unsubstantiated.''

Coach Ehren Earleywine has declined to discuss the matter publicly.

Earleywine has coached at Missouri for 10 years and has two seasons left on his contract. He signed a seven-year extension in 2011 and makes $155,000 a year.

Missouri's athletic director, Mack Rhoades, also has not spoken publicly about the investigation.

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Information from: Columbia Daily Tribune, http://www.columbiatribune.com

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