Edinburg football players protest removal from playoffs
Edinburg High School football players organized a protest Friday — hours after the school district withdrew the Bobcats from the playoffs.
The Edinburg High School Bobcats defeated the Pharr-San Juan-Alamo High School Bears on Thursday, but the victory was marred by unsportsmanlike conduct by defensive end Emmanuel A. Duron.
After Duron was ejected from the game, he attacked a referee. Duron was later charged with assault, a Class A misdemeanor.
In the aftermath of the incident, the Edinburg Consolidated Independent School District withdrew the team from the playoffs. If the district hadn't voluntarily withdrawn the Bobcats from the playoffs, the University Interscholastic League would have removed the Bobcats from competition.
That decision upset about 20 players, who organized a protest Friday outside the Edinburg CISD administration building.
"I don't believe that the rest of the team should be punished for something that one individual did," said Francisco Coronado, a football player who spoke at the protest. "We maintained our composure and we played a tough football game. And we ended up winning our game. And we believe that we should be able to play in the playoffs."
Edinburg CISD released a statement that read in part:
"The UIL has made it clear to Interim Superintendent Gilbert Garza Jr. that UIL would have removed the football team from the playoffs if the district did not withdraw the team. Under Texas law and district policy, the interim superintendent was authorized to move forward with the decision. Mr. Garza has confirmed this after consulting with the district’s legal counsel."
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