Virginia suspends Butler for chop block against BC

Updated: October 12, 2005, 5:08 PM ET
Associated Press

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- Virginia offensive lineman Brad Butler was suspended for one game by the school for throwing a chop-block in Saturday's loss to Boston College.

Butler will sit out Saturday's game against Florida State, the university said in a statement Monday.

The play came after the whistle in the third quarter of the Eagles' 28-17 win over Virginia on Saturday. Boston College's Mathias Kiwanuka, who was the Big East defensive player of the year last season, already was smarting from a sore ankle when Butler hit him in the back of the knees.

BC defensive lineman Al Washington retaliated and was ejected; BC linebacker Brian Toal hit Butler one play later and drew a personal foul. Kiwanuka was ejected later in the third quarter for trying to exact revenge.

"I've never been one to play outside of the rules," Butler said in the statement. "I was not trying to hurt Mathias Kiwanuka. I was engaged in blocking him because he is the type of player who makes plays all over the field. I regret this event occurred and have put the incident behind me."

In the statement, Virginia head coach Al Groh apologized to Mathias and said Butler accepts responsibility for the incident.

"Football is the most intense and physical of all games," Groh said. "Because it is so, all of us who have the privilege to participate should have the utmost respect for the game itself and for fellow players and coaches. On Saturday, Brad crossed the line in adhering to that standard, and for that he must take accountability."

On Sunday, BC coach Tom O'Brien said Kiwanuka and Washington would be allowed to play in Saturday's game against Wake Forest despite being ejected.

But on Wednesday, Kiwanuka said it was "highly unlikely" he'll play.

Butler, a senior from Lynchburg, has started the last 31 games as an offensive tackle.

Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press