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Miami proud to promote You Can Play Project this weekend

Players will wear special jerseys, patches for games vs. Providence

NHL.com @NHL

Miami University's hockey team will promote the You Can Play Project throughout its season-opening weekend series against Providence College.

Miami University's hockey team will promote the You Can Play Project throughout its season-opening weekend series against Providence College.

The You Can Play Project was founded following the death of Brendan Burke, a Miami student who served as a manager for the hockey team. He is the son of Brian Burke, the Calgary Flames president of hockey operations, and brother of Patrick Burke, who works in NHL's Department of Player Safety and is a co-founder of You Can Play.

Burke, who came out as openly gay during his time with the RedHawks, died in an automobile accident on Feb. 5, 2010.

You Can Play Project's mission is to advocate for LGBTQ rights in sports. It encourages people to judge athletes only by their talent, character, and work ethic through its motto: "If you can play, you can play."

In each of the weekend games at Goggin Ice Center - Friday at 7:35 p.m. ET and Saturday at 8 p.m. ET --the RedHawks will wear special jerseys , featuring patches with the You Can Play Project and Brendan Burke logos on the shoulders with the stripes representing the rainbow flag.

Video: The crew looks at the You Can Play feature

"He was a genuine, authentic person who just loved being a part of the team," coach Enrico Blasi said of Brendan Burke. "He loved life and loved people."

Blasi says it made perfect sense that the RedHawks would host a You Can Play Project event.

"In some ways, I feel like it's home for the Project. We are honored to remember Brendan's legacy and the You Can Play Project," he said.

The project has grown tremendously since its formation on March 4, 2012. It has more than 33,000 followers on Twitter and 12,000 more on Facebook.

You Can Play Project partners with teams and leagues from across the sports spectrum to promote inclusion of people from the LGBTQ community. It also hosts speakers and travels to conferences to set up panels. They will hold a workshop at the Out & Equal Workplace Summit on Oct. 10 in Philadelphia.

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