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Dr. Saturday

UCLA fights hunger after bowl checks are withheld

Graham Watson
Dr. Saturday

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UCLA is playing in the Fight Hunger Bowl on New Years Eve, but the Bruins are currently fighting hunger within their own ranks.

That's because the athletic department withheld expense checks from some football players after they failed to attend what they thought was a voluntary workout during finals week. UCLA officials told the LA Times the workout was mandatory and players were told that if they didn't attend, there would be consequences.

Players learned they would be checkless after the first bowl practice Sunday.

Unfortunately, those checks are the only source of funds UCLA players have during the month — they get a check now and another during bowl week — and without them, some aren't able to pay their rent or buy food.

"We are being held from our checks because we chose not to participate in voluntary workouts," defensive back Randall Carroll (above) wrote on Twitter, edited for the children. "...Honestly, don't know how I'm going to eat these next few days."

UCLA spokesman Nick Ammazzalorso told the LA Times that checks were reinstated when the school learned that the Fight Hunger Bowl proceeds might be going to their own players.{YSP:MORE}

"Those who did not complete their assignment had their checks withheld," Ammazzalorso told the paper. "The coaching staff changed its mind when they realized that withholding the money would cause the players some financial hardship."

Or the coaching staff changed its mind after the media got wind of it.

While the hunger strike lasted less than 24 hours, you have to laugh at the irony of allowing players to go hungry while preparing for the Fight Hunger Bowl.

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Graham Watson is on Facebook and Twitter: Follow her @Yahoo_Graham

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