Randy Burbach has lost his unpaid position as head coach of the Corbett (Ore.) Middle School football team for standing up for something he believes in -- specifically, that Hooters, the "delightfully tacky yet unrefined" restaurant with women in tight tanktops and short-shorts serving as waitresses, is an acceptable place to take seventh- and eighth-graders for an end-of-season party.
“I believe this is a fine venue,” Burbach told The Oregonian. “It’s not a strip club. If you have a dirty mind, you’ll find dirt.”
On Monday, Corbett School District athletic director J.P. Soulagnet sent a letter to parents explaining that he had asked Burbach to consider another restaurant. The letter reads, in part:
"I spoke with Randy Burbach this evening and asked him to move the event to a different venue so that all of the athletes and their families could attend and feel comfortable about the location and enjoy the season. He was unyielding and emphatically said no for a number of reasons. As a school district and athletic department we do not support nor condone the decision to hold an end of season celebration at Hooter’s for any of our teams, groups, or clubs cross the board and at at all levels including high school. This was a choice made by Randy Burbach on his own accord. This is no longer a Corbett Middle School Football event."
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Soulagnet also wrote that while he is supportive of the time and effort that Burbach and his assistants have contributed to the football program, he "cannot further support them in coaching roles here at Corbett based on the unwillingness to change the location of this event to a more appropriate spot." KGW.com reports that Burbach was fired.
Burbach told The Oregonian that he began planning the party a month ago, but didn't hear any concerns about holding it at Hooters until last weekend. He also said the party will go on.
“You teach your linemen to play through pressure, and that’s exactly what’s happening to me," Burbach said.
UPDATE: Hooters has offered to pick up the tab for the party and released the following statement. “The Corbett Middle School football players, coaches and their families have earned the right to celebrate a successful, hard-fought season. This Saturday, Nov. 9, Hooters is picking up the tab for an awesome end-of-season football party to honor the team’s gridiron success. To top it all off, Hooters will donate $1,000 along with 20 percent of Saturday’s Jantzen Beach location sales to Corbett Youth Football so that the entire community can join in celebrating the team’s winning season.”