Here's something you don't hear every day. Unhappy with reports that some of his players were cyberbullying a fellow student, and that others were skipping and failing classes, Union (Roosevelt, Utah) football coach Matt Labrum suspended his entire team after last Friday's 40-16 loss to Judge Memorial (Salt Lake City).
“We felt like everything was going in a direction that we didn’t want our young men going,” Labrum told the Deseret News. “We felt like we needed to make a stand.”
Labrum met with his 80 players again on Saturday morning and gave them a letter titled "Union football character," which outlined the following criteria to earn the right to be reinstated for Thursday and Friday's JV and varsity games.
1) Attend all practices that we have planned and any others that may come up.
2) Be on time and totally prepared
3) No F's or discipline problems
4) Do an individual service project for your family, give me a typed report of it and pictures and have your parents sign it. (Due Wed. before study hall)
5) Memorize and pass this quote off to one of the coaches at some point during study hall
"Good character is more to be praised than outstanding talent. Most talents are, to some extent, a gift. Good character, by contrast is not given to us. We have to build it, piece by piece — by thought, by choice, courage, and determination."
If you meet ALL criteria by Wednesday night, you will have earned the privilege to play in the games on Thursday and Friday. If you fail then you will miss this week's game.
In lieu of regular football practice, players have performed service projects and attended study hall this week. We should find out today how many players met Labrum's requirements.