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Women's tennis player says USF Bulls coach broke promise

USF women's tennis player Janette Bejlkova accused the school of reneging on a promise to extend her scholarship through next season.

The redshirt junior from the Czech Republic, who earned All-Big East honors as the No. 3 singles player this spring, said Thursday she played this season with stress fractures in both ankles with the understanding coach Agustin Moreno would keep her on scholarship for a fifth year.

USF issued a statement saying it would be "highly unusual" to provide a scholarship to a student who has graduated and no is longer competing, and students can appeal financial aid decisions.

Bejlkova, 24, is in graduate school but said if her scholarship is not renewed, her student visa would be jeopardized.

Bejlkova said she's also upset because she paid her own way to attend the NCAA Championships in Stanford, Calif., last week but Moreno prevented her from playing.

She has a letter she says is from former USF assistant Liz Cruz corroborating she "was promised a continuation of her scholarship for another year on a medical waiver if she would play through her injuries this year and delay her operation."

Bejlkova, No. 61 in the nation in the latest Intercollegiate Tennis Association ranking, was named a second alternate for the singles tournament but told by USF it would not send her. She added she paid for her travel and registered for the tournament but Moreno, attending with teammate Irene Rehberger, removed her from the alternates pool because she "was no longer representing USF."

USF's athletic administrators reversed that decision a few hours later, but the third and fourth alternates already had been promoted into the field.

USF's statement said Bejlkova registered "without (its) knowledge or consent … and did not follow normal protocol necessary to represent the university."

Bejlkova said she intended to have surgery on her ankles this spring but Moreno told her USF would have to forfeit her singles point if she didn't play and she would be brought back for a fifth year on scholarship in 2011-12.

Women's tennis player says USF Bulls coach broke promise 06/03/11 [Last modified: Friday, June 3, 2011 11:23am]
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