MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Twelve U of M football players have been disciplined due to a post game fight when the Tigers beat BYU in the Miami Beach Bowl last December.
Dozens of players scrambled as punches flew.
Network announcers commenting on the fight said the entire game had been emotionally charged.
“It was a great game, a spectacular game, and an ugly ending,” one announcer said.
According to the U of M, “The penalties include, but are not limited to, suspension from team activities (including practices, scrimmages and game competitions ranging from one half to two games), mandatory anger-management counseling and community service hours, and additional team-regulated punishments at the discretion of head coach Justin Fuente and his staff. Individual suspensions from game competition will be announced in conjunction with the first football game of the 2015 season.”
“We hold our student-athletes to the highest standards of sportsmanship and personal conduct at the University of Memphis,” said Director of Athletics Tom Bowen. “The actions of a few members of our football program in Miami were completely unacceptable. I can assure our community, fans and stakeholders that we have and will continue to hold our young men and women accountable and will use this unfortunate incident as a teaching tool for all our student-athletes moving forward.”
A news release from the American Athletic Conference stated, “The University has taken appropriate action in disciplining the student-athletes involved and the Conference office supports the measures. The American Athletic Conference and our member schools expect the highest standard of conduct from our student-athletes and those who fail to meet these expectations will be held accountable.”
The University of Memphis and BYU held a conference call after the fight, “which provides an opportunity to apologize for this incident and to promote the spirit of sportsmanship. The actions taken can also be a learning experience for the student-athletes involved.”
The release said the AAC will have no further comment.