Photographer says he was shoved by Hawaii coach Nick Rolovich during San Diego State game

HONOLULU, HI - NOVEMBER 23: Head coach Nick Rolovich of the Hawaii watches the action from the sideline during the first quarter of the game against the San Diego State Aztecs at Aloha Stadium on November 23, 2019 in Honolulu, Hawaii. (Photo by Darryl Oumi/Getty Images)
Hawaii is 8-4 after beating San Diego State on Saturday, a game where Hawaii coach Nick Rolovich allegedly shoved a reporter. (Photo by Darryl Oumi/Getty Images)

A photographer for the Honolulu Star-Advertiser said he was pushed by Hawaii coach Nick Rolovich and then knocked to the ground by another Hawaii staffer near the end of the Warriors’ win over San Diego State on Nov. 23.

The photographer said he followed Rolovich and others when they rushed the field following a potential game-tying San Diego State field goal with two seconds left that sailed wide.

Since the game wasn’t over, the people on the sideline who flooded the field had to head back to the sideline. It was in that scramble on and off the field that the alleged physicality took place and left the photographer with multiple injuries.

From the Star-Advertiser, which said the allegations were confirmed off the record by other sources:

The assault took place toward the end of last Saturday’s game against San Diego State, according to the photographer, Jamm Aquino. 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.

There’s a great shot of Rolovich from Aquino right at the moment of the incident in the link above.

Hawaii said photog breached protocol, Rolovich apologized

Hawaii confirmed that Rolovich “made contact” with the reporter on the field but noted that the reporter should not have been on the field in the first place because it’s against the rules for media members to enter the field while the game is still ongoing.

“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.

The school said Rolovich had apologized to the photographer and that the incident had been addressed with him.

Hawaii won the MWC West

Since the field goal went wide, Hawaii beat the Aztecs 14-11. The win sealed the Mountain West’s West Division for the Warriors and set up a game with Boise State on Dec. 7 in the Mountain West championship game.

It’s the second time Hawaii and Boise will play each other in 2019. The teams played each other Oct. 13 and Boise State won 59-37.

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports

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