PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Pine-Richland School District community members continue to speak out after the entire football coaching staff was let go.
On Monday, a silent show of support was held at Richland Township Community Park Monday night. It was organized by the Pine Richland United Youth Football and Cheer program.READ MORE: Resolution At Pittsburgh City Council Meeting Would Ban Plastic Bags In The City
Eric Kasperowicz and his entire coaching staff were let go last week, and it has not sat well with families in the school district.
Parents and youth athletes expressed how thankful they are for the former high school football coaches, and they want them to get their jobs back. Nearly 200 people wore Pine-Richland gear and stood together in silence for six minutes.
“I think the community has been hurting over the last several days,” said Joe Carter, who is a parent of two students in the Pine-Richland School District.
Pine Richland Youth Football and Cheer families are upset about the removal of Kasperowicz and his coaching staff.
“The kids that are in this program have seen the successes of the high school program that Coach K and his staff and his players have had. They want to play for Coach K,” said Kelly Huffman, president of Pine Richland United Youth Football and Cheer.
They say Coach K has spent years helping the youth organization.READ MORE: Woman In Lawrence County Flown To Hospital After Being Run Over By Her Own Car
“It’s kind of hard because he’s been such a good friend to all of us and he’s been a great coach for the high school and helps us out a lot,” said Cooper Huffman, who plays in the Pine Richland Youth Football and Cheer program.
The players, parents and coaches all want one thing: The coaches back on the field.
“To at least get back on the team and try and get the rest of the team back together,” said Cooper Huffman.
An advisor to Kasperowicz emailed a letter to the district solicitor asking if school administrators could meet to discuss the coach not having his contract renewed, according to our news partners at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
At this point, the district has not said why all the coaches were let go — but players say they were questioned about hazing and bullying. Kasperowicz, other coaches and players deny there was hazing that took place under his watch.
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- Assistant Pine-Richland Football Coach Believes Coaching Staff Was Victim Of Power Grab By School Officials
- More Coaches And Players Speak Out After Pine-Richland School District Removes Football Coaching Staff
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“Ultimately, I want them all reinstated. I want the administration to have repercussions for what’s been done at this point. I just want their lives back to normal because I couldn’t imagine what they’re going through,” said Kelly Huffman.MORE NEWS: 10th Settlement Reached In West Virginia VA Hospital Deaths
Kasperowicz has reapplied for his old job. Gateway’s athletic director and head football coach recently asked coaches across the state to not apply for the position.