Thursday, July 15, 2004

Huggins will return start of Sept.

Bearcats coach has been suspended since arrest

By Bill Koch
Enquirer staff writer

The University of Cincinnati is expected to call a news conference today to announce that basketball coach Bob Huggins will be reinstated on either Sept. 1 or Sept. 2, a source close to the situation said late Wednesday night.

Huggins was suspended indefinitely on June 12, following his arrest on June 8 in Fairfax for driving under the influence.

He pleaded no contest on June 15 in Fairfax Mayor's Court.

As part of his suspension, he was ordered by UC president Nancy Zimpher to vacate his office and forgo use of his university-furnished automobile.

He was being paid his base salary of $185,000 during his suspension, but was prohibited from being involved in recruiting or having contact with UC players.

His return in early September will mean that his suspension lasted 81 days.

Although Huggins will miss the July recruiting period, a return in early September will make him available for the important contact period leading up the early signing dates in November.

Huggins, 50, just completed his 15th season at UC and has guided the Bearcats to 13 straight NCAA Tournaments.

Under the terms of the suspension, UC athletic director Bob Goin was to make a recommendation to Zimpher when he believed it was appropriate for Huggins to return.

As recently as last Thursday, Goin said Huggins had not been told what criteria he had to meet.

"Nobody wrote a book on this," Goin said at the time. "I wanted him to have time away and that is occurring."

Huggins will return start of Sept.

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