The Hawaii Exemption – 2012 Edition

By Kevin Kelley -
Aloha Stadium

The Hawaii Exemption, as it’s commonly known, is a rule enacted by the NCAA that allows Division I football teams that play at Hawaii to schedule a 13th regular-season game. The rule also allows the Warriors to play an extra game each season.

The addition of the 13th game, usually a home game, means extra revenue for those teams which is used to offset travel costs. But teams are not obligated to schedule the extra game.

Hawaii announced their 2012 football schedule in March, but this year it only consists of 12 games. UH athletic director Jim Donovan said at the time that the Warriors may add a 13th game, but nothing has materialized.

Of Hawaii’s 12 games scheduled in 2012, six are at home. Listed below are each of their home opponents and their own “Hawaii Exemption” status:

  • Lamar (12 games) – The Cardinals, an FCS school, will play a 12-game schedule this season. That is one more game than usual.
  • Nevada (12 games) – The Wolf Pack opted not to schedule a 13th game and instead will have two open dates in 2012.
  • New Mexico (13 games) – New Mexico has used the rule to schedule five non-conference games instead of their usual four. The Lobos will host Southern and Texas State and travel to New Mexico State, Texas and Texas Tech.
  • Boise State (12 games) – The Broncos did not schedule a 13th game and will have two open dates.
  • UNLV (13 games) – UNLV will play 5 non-conference games in 2013. The Rebels will host Minnesota, Northern Arizona and Washington State and will travel to Louisiana Tech and Utah State.
  • South Alabama (13 games) – South Alabama travels to Hawaii in the their inaugural season in the FBS. Their other four non-conference games are vs. UTSA and Nicholls State and at Mississippi State and NC State.

The NCAA Bylaws that govern the “Hawaii Exemption” are listed below (NCAA Division I Manual):

17.27.2 Alaska/Hawaii, Additional Football Contest
Member institutions located in Alaska and Hawaii shall be permitted to exceed, by one, the maximum number of football contests permitted under Bylaw but otherwise shall conform to the same maximum number of contests and dates of competition permitted other members of the Association. Annual Exemptions. [FBS/FCS]
The maximum number of football contests shall exclude the following:

(j) Hawaii, Alaska, Puerto Rico. [FBS/FCS]
Any football games played in Hawaii, Alaska or Puerto Rico, respectively, either against or under the sponsorship of an active member institution located in Hawaii, Alaska or Puerto Rico, by a Division I member institution located outside the area in question.

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Comments (2)

Too bad Hawaii isn’t interested in traveling for its 13th game. They could replace Savannah State on Florida State’s schedule.

Maybe if FSU promised to visit Hawaii at a future date, they could do it.

Well it’s about money. I’m sure FSU contacted them but Hawaii wanted to much money. FCS teams are cheaper buy a win games. Sure they have to win 7 games to make a bowl but it saves them money.