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Coach Leads HS Athletes in California Capitol Protest

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A California high school football coach led a group of student-athletes in a gathering Thursday at the state capitol in Sacramento. 

Patrick Walsh, head varsity football coach at Serra High School, led the event. Walsh is part of a coalition of coaches pushing for California to resume youth and high school sports. 

“The one thing I guarantee that will unify everybody in the state of California is kids,” Walsh stated in a speech at the event, according to the Climate Online. “We will not turn our back on the kids, we are not going to stop, we are full speed ahead until you guys are wearing your pads, and you guys are bouncing the basketballs around, and you guys are playing.”

Over 100 student-athletes delivered 10,000 letters and signatures to the governor’s office, asking for the reopening of youth sports.

The effort is being led by Let Them Play CA, which has amassed nearly 60,000 members on Facebook from across the country. 

“We want to do everything we can just to get to that next level,” CJ McMillan, a student-athlete who plays football at Capital Christian High School in Sacramento, told Climate Online. “Some of these people behind me, this is the only way out.”

The efforts of Let Them Play appear to be gaining traction. Almost half of the California State Assembly members have signed a resolution urging governor Gavin Newsom to allow prep sports in the state to start immediately. 

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