UC Irvine’s Stewart Again Suspended Because of Unclear Academic Status

UC Irvine guard Keith Stewart was suspended for the second time in two weeks Thursday because of a situation affecting his academic eligibility.

Stewart, a senior, was in uniform for Irvine’s game against 16th-ranked Nevada Las Vegas when Athletic Director Dan Guerrero told him he would be indefinitely suspended. Irvine has one regular-season game remaining, Saturday against New Mexico State, and is trying to clinch the final berth in the Big West Conference tournament.

Stewart, who averages 16 points and is Irvine’s second-leading scorer, missed last week’s games against San Jose State and Pacific as an NCAA penalty for falling below the 12-unit minimum required for eligibility. He was able to play against Cal State Long Beach on Monday after regaining his eligibility by rescinding an earlier decision to drop a class.


Guerrero said the latest suspension is an academic matter and an extension of the earlier situation.

“It’s a shame,” Irvine Coach Rod Baker said. “It’s a shame for Stew, not for us.”

Stewart’s participation in the Long Beach game apparently was not in violation of NCAA rules.