HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The financial structure for the University of Hawaii athletics department is like a game of Jenga with half of its blocks already missing.
As if the school didn't have enough on its plate, a recent NCAA ruling has impacts that can send the whole tower crashing and possibly Hawaii out of Division I.
The NCAA board of directors ruled that schools in the Power Five conferences, which includes the SEC, ACC, Pac-12, Big-12, and Big-10, will have the power to create their own rules.
Members will have say on things such as cost-of attendance stipends, recruiting rules and insurance benefits for players.
Leagues outside the Power Five, including the Mountain West, can adopt their own rules too, but many don't have the financial resources to do so.
UH athletics director Ben Jay says the ruling is not unexpected and the school needs to increase funds in order to survive in this new landscape.
"We're going to have to generate more revenue," Jay said. "There's no doubt about that. We've always had to do that. People want to support football and basketball and baseball and all of our other sports, so it's going to come down to how are we going to get that support financially from our fan base and from all the folks who love UH athletics."
The rules don't go into effect until next year, but Jay says the Mountain West and other conferences are meeting monthly to discuss a course of action.