When Nevada takes the field for the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl on Christmas Eve, they’ll do so without their leading rusher, the school announced via a press release this afternoon.
Vai Taua, one of three 1,000-yard rushers for the Wolfpack this season, was declared academically ineligible and will not play against SMU.
“I’m upset and disappointed that Vai didn’t fulfill his obligations as a student-athlete,” head coach Chris Ault said in a statement. “He has let his team down and I will evaluate his future with the program after the bowl game. Our focus now is on the upcoming game and our program is moving forward in that direction.”
“This is disappointing for all of us, including Vai,” athletics director Cary Groth said. “Like all of our student-athletes, Vai was aware of his academic responsibilities. We are all hopeful that this will be a positive learning experience for him moving forward.”
Not only was the junior running back tops on his team with 1,345 yards, but his 122.3 yards per game was good for ninth in the nation in 2009.