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Shelman wont reveal the identity of his sources, so its impossible for me to check with them. Reporters and editors who know the identities say they were rock-solid sources who would have known what they were talking about, even though they didnt work for the university.
Ive checked to make sure the vetting of the anonymous sources followed the newspapers rigorous standards. No one made a misstep Ive been able to detect; they were methodical and cautious.
Patrick Reusse, veteran sports columnist, also thought they had it right and weighed in with a column. Like the others, hes beating himself up pretty good, going over what they did and didnt do. Maybe they should have called Monson, although he was coaching a game that night. Maybe Maturis vague comments should have been interpreted as a denial.
We all could have been more skeptical. But everything we gathered made more and more sense it took on this momentum, Reusse recalled.
Did the story shift in the night? Or was it wrong all along? In either case, Reusse said, We have to take ultimate responsibility for that story.
Gillespie added that no one involved felt good about the confusion caused by the story, and we apologize to any readers who felt misled.
The Opinion section is produced by the Editorial Department to foster discussion about key issues. The Editorial Board represents the institutional voice of the Star Tribune and operates independently of the newsroom.