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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted at 10:55 a.m., Tuesday, March 25, 2003

WAC sanctions UH for bowl game violation

By Ferd Lewis
Advertiser Staff Writer

The Western Athletic Conference today slapped the University of Hawai'i with a public reprimand and an "undisclosed financial penalty" for failure to certify its football team in the ConAgra Foods Hawai'i Bowl, school and conference officials announced.

According to the WAC, the Warriors were the only conference bowl team that did not certify its roster as post-season eligible as required by a new conference rule.

The WAC Council, which is made up of athletic directors, faculty representatives and senior women's administrators, heard the case last month and recommended a reprimand.

The conference Board of Directors, which is composed of the presidents of the 10 member institutions, Monday reaffirmed the decision and is believed to have added the financial penalty.

Although neither UH nor the WAC office would comment, the fine is believed to be in the $5,000-$10,000 range.

UH has maintained that the closeness of the end of the semester on Dec. 20 and the Dec. 25 date of the game made certification difficult. UH had been counseled to apply for a waiver but never followed through, school and conference officials said.

"We are not happy with any sanction or any kind even the simple reprimand and relatively small fine imposed in this case," said Peter Englert, UH-Manoa chancellor.

"But I think the conference will realize that the six-credit rule needs to be re-examined so that member schools are not placed in this impossible situation in the future."