Randy Burbach admits it was never supposed to be like this.
Is it normal for a middle school football awards dinner to be conducted with television cameras around to capture the moment? These are boys ranging in age from 12 to 14, after all. Are journalists usually camped out to note what happens?
Burbach knows the answers, and he knows the answers might be different if the venue were virtually anywhere else — anywhere but a Hooters restaurant. Yes, that’s what the Corbett (Ore.) Middle School players wanted, so that’s why they arrived Saturday at the establishment that touts its wings, shrimp and burgers but is known for much, much more. They arrived in a limousine, 20 miles from home but giddy as can be, sporting spanking new black-and-white jackets as they waded through a sizable media presence, a few working waitresses and just maybe some moral outrage.
“Our goal was to give them the best experience,” Burbach told USA TODAY Sports.