Healthy quarterbacks, running backs and inside linebackers aren't the only people the University of Hawaii football team is running out of these days. Paying customers are also in critically short supply.
Manti Te'o no longer walks with a protective boot on his right foot or with a limp, but the pain he feels is evident. For the third time in two NFL seasons a foot injury has forced him to vacate his inside linebacker spot with the San Diego Chargers for a place in rehab.
How, you might wonder, do you lose a school-record 16 road games in a row? Well, the University of Hawaii football team packed an explanation into one painfully revealing 3-hour, 16-minute Reader's Digest version of futility Saturday night.
Inspiration surrounds San Diego State running back Donnel Pumphrey on a daily basis. Challenges stare at him. It all comes in the form of Marshall Faulk's grace, Ronnie Hillman's elusiveness, George Jones' acceleration ... all the Aztecs greats at the position who seemingly gaze down upon Pumphrey from the walls of the running backs' meeting room.
When Kansas fired its football coach, Charlie Weis, Sunday, it wasn't long before the concern was felt 4,000 miles away in Manoa. Not that the University of Hawaii was a big fan of Weis, whose then-Notre Dame team administered a 49-21 thrashing to the Rainbow Warriors in the 2008 Hawaii Bowl.
If there is a benefit to being the last of the Mountain West's 12 members to open conference play, it is that the University of Hawaii football team has gotten a good long look at what it will be up against when it gets there.
On paper it looked like a win-win situation for the University of Hawaii, the idea of having boosters help fund big-money coaching contracts. But. as with too many things at UH, it hasn't always gone as planned.
There are some jobs where, however talented you might be, convention dictates that the idea is not to be too busy. Scott Harding knows this full well because he has one of them: He is the University of Hawaii's punter.
Bless his heart, Hawaii defensive coordinator Kevin Clune's mantra is that his unit has to give up one less point than the Rainbow Warriors' offense scores. "If the offense scores 12, we have to hold them to 11, that's our job," Clune resolutely maintained Saturday.
Of all the black-and-gold-clad fans in Folsom Field to root for him and the University of Colorado against Hawaii on Saturday morning, defensive lineman Juda Parker knows there will be a special voice striving to be heard from section 107, row 28.
When doctors removed the kidney from Ma‘ake Kemoeatu that they would transplant to his ailing younger brother Chris they marveled at its size. "About one-and-a-half-times bigger than any other kidney I've ever put in," said Dr. Stephen Bartlett.
The words had a ring of distant familiarity to them Saturday night when Aloha Stadium public announcer Keenan Takamori intoned, "Touchdown by Yap!" Perhaps there was even a bit of nostalgia for old-timers who remember the late 1970s.
Hawaii and Northern Iowa play what is commonly referred to as a "guarantee game" this evening at Aloha Stadium. Problem is, there seems to be a difference of opinion on what the term "guarantee game" means.
Twenty-one years after his death, the shadow of Stan Sheriff still looms large at Aloha Stadium. When Hawaii plays frequent Football Championship Subdivision contender Northern Iowa there Saturday it will be a match of football programs 4,035 miles and a division apart but now brought together, in part, by the memories of a man who was not only a common thread but a shaper and innovator at both.
What we have Saturday at Aloha Stadium just might be the University of Hawaii's best -- and last -- chance to beat Oregon State for many years to come. Never mind that the Rainbow Warriors are 10-point underdogs.
The book on University of Hawaii punter Scott Harding these days, it seems, is a dog-eared "Roget's Thesaurus." As in how many terms can opposing coaches employ in their attempts to describe the hardships that Harding, a six-year Australian Rules pro turned punter, presents for their special teams units?
The chant rolled through Aloha Stadium like claps of rising thunder: "Dee-fense! Dee-fense!" For the first time in years it was again a rallying cry of the University of Hawaii football faithful, not some longshot prayer to the heavens.
The mandate and, indeed, a slogan around University of Hawaii football for this year has been to "finish." After losing five games by a touchdown or less in 2013, it is a worthy goal. But the financial and emotional imperative at UH these days is for the Rainbow Warriors to start well, too.
At the start of his first meeting as chair of the University of Hawaii Board of Regents Intercollegiate Athletic Committee, Jeff Portnoy slammed the opening gavel to the table with an exuberance that caused some people to recoil.
Contrary to what's been floating around the Twitterverse and even some mainstream mainland sports media outlets, the University of Hawaii football team isn't going anywhere in the immediate future ... except to Aloha Stadium and six venues on the continent to play football games over the next few months.
Before the first volleyball is served or football kicked off this season, the University of Hawaii is already waging fierce competition. With itself. The battleground is shirts, hats and other newly minted athletic logowear being sold at both the campus bookstore and the newly created H-Zone.
It seems that Dave Shoji's volleyball national coaching brethren have two messages for his coming milestone 40th season. One for the celebratory cake and one for the court: On one hand, "Congratulations!"
Luxury high-rise condos sprouting in Kakaako, taxing pensions, preschool education, the excise tax surcharge... Sure, those are among the hot-button topics of the day as voters go to the polls. But what about the compelling issues of the local sports world?
Sacking an Ohio State quarterback in front of 104,719 predominantly scarlet and gray partisans at the Horseshoe remains a moment of considerable pride for Quinlinn Ka'uakeanihinawelau Onapaliulioke Koolau Adolpho.
Loved your insightful-as-usual annual state-of-the-Big 12 address at Monday's media day in Dallas -- right up until the point where you reached into your golf bag, took out the Big Bertha driver and started whacking the NCAA enforcement gumshoes about the head with it.
In announcing deepening budget cuts and a hiring freeze, University of Hawaii athletic director Ben Jay grimly told coaches and staff in an internal email Thursday, "Suffice to say, these next two years will not be easy."
Commissioner Mike Slive began his annual state-of-the-Southeastern Conference address Monday in Alabama with a shout-out to his wife on their 46th wedding anniversary. Sweet and sentimental then quickly gave way to calculated and demanding.
Manti Te'o reclined in a beach chair in the middle of a large makeshift photo studio in Waipahu where sand was spread around his feet and props were arranged to give the appearance of a man on his own island.
As a 14-year-old on the way to surfing competitions at Huntington Beach, Calif., Carissa Moore would pause and inspect with awe the hand imprints of the legendary surfers pressed into the concrete along Main Street and Pacific Coast Highway.
They say that soccer star Lionel Andres Messi is so quick and nimble of foot, especially the left one, that he can dribble in circles in a phone booth. But for him the most meaningful change of direction, one that he is on the verge of with a victory in the World Cup finale Sunday, has been 13 often-arduous years in the making.
A good part of sports is about believing in the unlikely and clinging to hope in the face of long odds. In Cleveland the enduring faithful have surely had their belief heavily trampled upon and tested more than most.
When Rainbow Wahine volleyball coach Dave Shoji signed his latest deal in 2008, there was little fanfare over what became the longest contract — six years, eight months — in University of Hawaii athletic history.
When parting the cobwebs of nearly 45 years of Aloha Stadium history and lore, you never know what you might find. Just like the Aloha Stadium Authority, which has been given plenty to consider by the Aloha Stadium Comprehensive Site Summary released Thursday.
In five seasons pitching for the Milwaukee Brewers, Chuck Crim enjoyed few nights off. But it wasn't until he saw his numbers etched in a bronze plaque among the first wave of players enshrined on the Brewers' Wall of Honor this month that the former University of Hawaii star realized just how rare they really were.
They say the prestigious Harton S. Semple Trophy weighs about 10 pounds. When it isn't filled to its gleaming brim with beer, that is. The trophy that is toted by a white-gloved custodian before being handed over to the winner of the U.S. Women's Open found another use Sunday night.
The most compelling commercial -- in any language -- of this World Cup belongs to the Bank of Chile. It is less an advertisement than an emotional exhortation for La Roja, Chile's team, to accomplish the remarkable.
Sure, March is when madness overtakes the NCAA and January is when football crowns its champion, but history tells us that June is when the foundation of college athletics tends to undergo seismic shifts.
It started innocently enough in 1984 when Mark Stewart went to sign up a 6-year-old son for soccer in Kailua. And now, 30 years later, he's left to marvel at how he has ended up with nearly 500,000 kids.
Famous for his front-and-center role in the NFL Draft, where he announces the next team up for a selection, it is Commissioner Roger Goodell's turn to make a decision. And a lot of eyes are on him in the Jim Irsay case.
Ever since Colt Brennan providentially landed in our midst, we've been waiting for the next big passer to drop into the University of Hawaii huddle from the heavens. Or, in the latest installment, from Los Angeles.
The Academic Progress Rate scores for UH, announced Wednesday by the NCAA, suggest a turnover in athletes is the biggest barrier to the athletic department reaching its avowed goal of breaking into the top 50 percent of Division I institutions in the APR.
The University of Hawaii had a pretty good haul at the American Volleyball Coaches Association Sand Volleyball Championships over the weekend, and the Rainbow Wahine's head coach didn't do badly, either.
Their budgets and head-coaching records are almost as far apart as their campuses, but today, Hawaii's Norm Chow and Washington's Chris Petersen have more in common than just their Aug. 30 season opener.
The standard measures of the growing success of the men's tennis team, of course, are the Sea Warriors' 20-0 record, Saturday's second consecutive Pacific West Conference championship and a No. 3 ranking in NCAA Division II.
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