By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher
A Hawai’ian photographer has reported that he was assaulted by Hawai’i head football coach Nick Rolovich. The incident happened last week as the Rainbow Warriors were facing the San Diego State Aztecs.
Honolulu Star-Advertiser photographer also alleges that he was shoved to the ground by a school employee. Jamm Aquino said that he was trying to get a photo of Rolovich at the end of the game.
He the alleges Rolovich “made contact” with him. Aquino reportedly has a “concussion, a bloody nose, a sore shoulder, and a plot lower lip,” according to the USA Today.
The photographer also alleges that he damaged his camera gear, as well.
“Our photographers are representing our readers and deserve to be treated as professionals,” Star-Advertiser editor Frank Bridgewater said in the article that posted Friday. “Swearing at and, worse, physically assaulting them, will not be tolerated. We will take whatever steps are needed to protect our photographers’ rights and to ensure that those who abuse them are called out.”
He alleges that he was waiting for Aztecs head coach Rocky Long and Rolovich to meet and shake hands at the end of the game. The Rainbow Warriors won 14-11.
However, he alleges that as Rolovich was approaching, the photographer says that the football coach was pointing at him and swearing at him. The newspaper says that there was confusion on the field at the end of the contest.
The Aztecs missed the potentially game-tying field goal, which sealed the victory. The players and coaches, according to the story, rushed the field despite there being two seconds left in the game.
At that time, he alleges that an employee shoved him as they were directed back to the sidelines. This would allow the Rainbow Warriors to take the final snap to end the game.
Hawai’i says that Aquino violated the school’s protocol by stepping onto the field.
“We are disappointed that a Star-Advertiser photographer violated sideline protocol by entering the field of play Saturday night,” the university said in a statement provided to the Star-Advertiser. “Coach Rolovich acknowledges that he came into physical contact with the photographer as he was attempting to clear the field to avoid being penalized because, with two seconds left on the clock, the game was not over.
“Coach Rolovich regrets the situation occurred. He contacted the photographer late Saturday night and apologized. The university is addressing the situation with Coach Rolovich regarding the matter and will have no further comment.”
The paper alleges that the photographer has photographed the team for 15 seasons. An Associated Press photographer, who was reportedly next to Aquino, was also allegedly shoved.