Miami President Defends Punishments

Calling his behavior a
Calling his behavior a "disgrace," Miami sophomore Anthony Reddick apologized for his role in Saturday's brawl. (By Wilfredo Lee -- Associated Press)
Thursday, October 19, 2006

University of Miami President Donna Shalala offered no apologies yesterday for the disciplinary action taken in the days following a sideline-clearing football brawl that sparked widespread outrage, saying the punishments handed out were strong enough.

Two of the sanctioned Miami players remorsefully agreed.

Sophomore Anthony Reddick and senior captain Brandon Meriweather issued apologies -- on their own, without university urging -- Tuesday for their roles in the brawl with Florida International.

Reddick swung his helmet as a weapon and struck an FIU player with it during Saturday night's fight at the Orange Bowl, while Meriweather was seen stomping on some Golden Panthers in apparent retaliation after they hit one of his teammates.

"You'll never see that behavior out of me again," Reddick said. "My behavior was a disgrace to my school, my family and my friends, especially the young kids who look up to me as their role model. I do understand that what I did was wrong."

Meriweather's mea culpa came in the form of a letter, which Hurricanes Coach Larry Coker wasn't made aware of until moments before its distribution.

Shalala said that sanctions levied against 13 players for their role in the sideline-clearing brawl were fair, justified and strong enough to satisfy the university.

"This university will be firm and punish people who do bad things," Shalala said. "But we will not throw any student under the bus for instant restoration of our image or our reputation. I will not hang them in a public square. I will not eliminate their participation at the university. I will not take away their scholarships." . . .

Adrian Peterson plans to play at least one more game for Oklahoma.

The junior tailback, speaking publicly for the first time since breaking his collarbone on Saturday against Iowa State, said he intends to play in a bowl game if the Sooners reach the postseason.

Peterson, whose left arm is in a sling, said he could be back in four to six weeks, but Oklahoma trainer Scott Anderson offered a six-week time frame for Peterson's return. The injury is being treated without surgery, Anderson said.

Peterson didn't take questions about whether he plans to return to school next season or enter the NFL draft.

· OLYMPICS: Marc Hodler , who blew the whistle on vote-buying in Salt Lake City's winning campaign for the 2002 Winter Games and other Olympic bids, died yesterday at 87.

Hodler, an International Olympic Committee member since 1963 and president of the International Ski Federation from 1951 to '98, died in a hospital in his home town of Bern, Switzerland, three days after a stroke, the IOC said.

· TENNIS: James Blake lost to Kristof Vliegen , 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (7-5), in the second round of the Madrid Masters. Andy Murray upset third-seeded Ivan Ljubicic , 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.

-- From News Services

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