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High School Football Coach Suspends Entire Team

Rich Johnson of Spectacle Photo, Getty Images

A high school football coach in Utah was concerned with the off field behavior of his players, so he took the players off the field. After a recent Friday night game, coach Matt Labrum of Union High School gathered the players together and suspended the entire team.

What prompted the coaching staff into action was when guidance councilors told them about a student that was being bullied by players in an online chat program. There wasn’t enough clear evidence to pinpoint who on the team was doing it, but the complaint was the last straw for the coach. There had already dealt with players skipping and failing classes, and disrespecting teachers.

“It had gotten to a new level,…We felt like we weren’t respecting the teachers, what they were trying to do inside the school, other people’s time. Overall, our program wasn’t going where we wanted it to go. We weren’t reaching the young men like we wanted to reach them.” Coach Labrumon on

After the game the coach told the players to turn in their jerseys and equipment and they would have to earn the privilege to play. To earn that privilege the players would have to show up on time and attend all classes, those with bad grades must show improvement, go to a class on character development and instead of practice they would perform community service. The school administration and parents supported the coach’s decision.

The players spent the next week doing what the coached asked and before the next game all but nine of the players earned their jerseys back.


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