Oct. 21, 2011
TUCSON--Arizona defensive backs Shaquille Richardson, Jourdon Grandon, Mark Watley and Lyle Brown have been suspended by the league following a Pac-12 review of the shoving match and fight between UA and UCLA just before halftime of the Cats' 48-12 football victory on Thursday. Six UCLA players also received suspension.
Richardson and Grandon will serve full-game suspensions, while Watley and Brown will have to miss the first half of Arizona's game at Washington Oct. 29.
Richardson, a starting cornerback, was ejected from the game immediately after the fracas on Thursday and did not play in the second half. Grandon has started several games as a nickel back, while Watley and Brown are key backups and special teams players.
"It was an unfortunate incident and one with consequences that we fully understand and support," Arizona athletics director Greg Byrne said. "The University of Arizona in no way accepts such behavior from student-athletes.
"We stress that sportsmanship is a principle to follow in everything that we do," Byrne said. "The Pac-12 moved quickly to resolve this issue and we'll move forward."
All four UA players were identified along with seven suspended UCLA players after a Pac-12 review of videotape of the incident, which began with less than ten seconds remaining in the half after a fan ran onto the field and halted play. Many members of both teams surged on to the playing field. Richardson and UCLA receiver Taylor Embree were officially ejected before the final seconds of play resumed.
"I'm disappointed for Arizona and UCLA," interim Arizona head coach Tim Kish said. "The altercation was a black mark on what was a good game for us. We know that players get excited and driven during games, but composure has to be maintained throughout. We'll learn from this and grow."
In handing down the suspensions, Pac-12 Commissioner Larry Scott said, "The conference is extremely disappointed in the actions of the student-athletes involved in this incident. It is unacceptable behavior and violated conference rules, as well as NCAA fighting rules. I have taken these actions today because it is imperative that we hold our student-athletes and coaches to the highest standards of sportsmanship," Scott said.