In a section 1983 suit brought against a county Board of Education (Board) by the parents of children who were dismissed from a high school football team for challenging their coach's leadership, a jury verdict in favor of defendants is affirmed where: 1) the Board's policy amounts to a content-neutral time, place and manner regulation; 2) the board's policy is not unconstitutionally vague on its face and as applied; 3) plaintiffs' challenges to several of trial court's jury instructions are rejected; but 4) district court's decision to grant $87,216.49 in attorney's fees and expenses to defendants is reversed as plaintiffs' action were not frivolous, unreasonable, or without foundation.
Argued: August 6, 2009
Decided and Filed: November 12, 2009
Opinion by Circuit Judge Sutton
For Appellant: G. Mark Mamantov, Bass Berry & Sims, PLC., Knoxville, Tennessee
For Appellee: Michael S. Kelley, Kennerly Montgomery & Finley, PC., Knoxville, Tennessee