Jamm Aquino, a photographer for the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, is alleging an on-field assault by Hawai'i head coach Nich Rolovich and another athletic department employee in the final seconds of the Rainbow Warriors' win over San Diego State in Week 13.
With eight seconds remaining, San Diego State missed a game-tying field goal, prompting players and others to rush the field. There were, however, two seconds remaining, which sent Hawai'i coaches into a panic as they attempted to avoid a penalty. In the melee, Aquino was "accosted," which was confirmed by others:
"Coach Nick Rolovich charged Aquino, swearing at him, and made contact. The UH employee then shoved Aquino to the ground, he said, leaving him with a concussion, a bloody nose and split lower lip as he fell on his camera, and a sore shoulder. A camera lens also was damaged.
"After the game, Aquino waited near San Diego State coach Rocky Long to get a photo of the two head coaches shaking hands. As Rolovich approached, he saw Aquino, pointed at him and again began swearing at him, Aquino said."
Aquino acknowledges media members are not allowed on the field after games but said photographers "have gone onto the field after a game to record victory celebrations, without any objections."
Hawai'i issued a statement regarding the allegations:
“We are disappointed that a Star-Advertiser photographer violated sideline protocol by entering the field of play Saturday night. 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."
Aquino, nor did the Star-Advertiser, say if he plans to press charges or continue discussing the matter.