Mike Hvizdo forced out as Connecticut high school hoops coach over short film

4:35 PM, Feb 28, 2013   |    comments
Credit: AP/file.
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Scott Allen, USA TODAY High School Sports

There's a controversy playing out in Connecticut, where Weston boys basketball coach Mike Hvizdo was asked to resign his position on Feb. 7 because of his role in a nine-minute comedy film 10 years ago.

Hvizdo was a member of the cast of "Forbidden Fruit," which was directed by former Jack Black assistant Stephen Moramarco in 2003. The R-rated film, which was posted online and e-mailed to school administrators, features vulgar language and a sexual theme, but no nudity.

Following a meeting with Weston Superintendent of Schools Colleen Palmer, Weston principal Lisa R. Wolak and athletic director Mark Berkowitz, Hvizdo resigned citing "personal reasons."

The Westport News published portions of a letter that school administrators sent to parents three days later.

"This film is vulgar, contains offensive sexual language, and depicts sexual acts among multiple partners in which Mr. Hvizdo is a participant," the letter said. "Unfortunately, material posted on the Internet takes on a life of its own, and there is no way to guarantee that this video will not be viewed by our entire community and most importantly, by our student athletes, now and into the future."

In a column for The Hour, John Nash suggests that a disgruntled parent sent the video to Weston officials.

"According to multiple sources with connections to the Weston High athletic program, this parent(s) was upset with the way their son was being treated as a WHS basketball player, and the inquiry into Hvizdo's' past was nothing more than a blatant attack with the sole goal of getting the coach removed," Nash writes.

There have been conflicting reports about whether Hvizdo resigned or was fired, but on Monday hetold the Weston Forum that he wants his job back. During a 90-minute public comment session at the Weston Board of Education's meeting that night, several people spoke out in favor of Hvizdo, including two of his former players.

"Only people in the gym with us could see how upset he was," sophomore Matt Gurman said. "Regardless of what he did, he is a much better role model to us than anyone at this table."

USA TODAY High School Sports

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