Bridgeport football coach says team not good enough for playoffs - FOX 32 News Chicago

Football coach says team not good enough for playoffs

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

A group of 10-year-old boys on the Bridgeport Huskies football team from Chicago's South Side won fair and square and qualified for the playoffs.

But they won't be going.

Their coach says they're not fast enough, they're not strong enough, so they're not playing.

And you better believe there are angry 10-year-olds and upset parents.

There's no dispute the Bridgeport Huskies would be the underdogs at a playoff series but they did qualify argues Richard Costello.

"They earned a spot to be in the playoffs, whether they win or lose it doesn't matter," said Costello.

Despite having seven losses and two wins this season, the Huskies beat the Chicago Bengals last weekend, 21-12 and secured a spot in the playoffs until their coach declined the invitation.

"He didn't talk to the parents, he didn't talk to anybody and said it's my decision and that's the one that's going to count and the kids were heartbroken, they were disappointed - it's totally wrong what they did," said Costello.

"We were told because of financing reasons," said Sam Toribio.

But the Huskies' coach tells Fox Chicago News it's not about money, it's about player safety and the last thing he wants is for a member of this team to be injured.

"It's a safety issue with our kids. Our kids again have been playing honestly in a situation where they've been playing kids who are bigger, older all year. We made a decision as a program to not let them do that again," said Kevin McBride.

We're told several players are nursing injuries.

Even so Marcus Norton and others argue it's heartbreak off the field that's the most troubling.

"My son is at home, he's upset. He tells me this is not football, in football we should be able to lose in the playoffs not have someone take us out of the playoffs," said Norton.

Now the team is preparing for a Sunday game that's just for fun.

"To end the season on a good note, had nothing to do with financial issues," said McBride.

But on the Bridgeport Huskies Facebook Page the reasons listed for not participating in the playoffs include the opposing team's better record - the team the Huskies would face in the playoffs beat them several times by several touchdowns.

"It doesn't matter about the score or who wins or loses, we earned the right to go play," said Norton.

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