Ferd's Words Unfortunate turn of events puts Warriors in a bad light By Ferd Lewis Oct. 14, 2014 Mahalo for supporting Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Enjoy this free story! GEORGE F. LEEUniversity of Hawaii Warrior football player Joey Iosefa picked up more yardage late in the game against the Oregon State Beavers on Saturday at Aloha Stadium. Read more Mahalo for reading the Honolulu Star-Advertiser! You're reading a premium story. Read the full story with our Print & Digital Subscription. Subscribe Now Read this story for free: Watch an ad or complete a survey Log In Already a subscriber? Log in now to continue reading this story. Activate Digital Account Print subscriber but without online access? Activate your Digital Account now. If the subject was going to be University of Hawaii running backs, then we should be talking about Diocemy Saint Juste and Saturday night’s breakthrough performance right now. But instead of his career-best 135 yards and a first UH touchdown, the prevailing topic of public conversation has been another back, Joey Iosefa, and his blood-alcohol level early Sunday morning. Rather than a guy who came off the bench to help lift the Rainbow Warriors past Wyoming, the latest headlines are of somebody who, by his arrest on suspicion of drunken driving, has brought the DUI issue back to the team’s doorstep. Just when it seemed things might be coming around for the struggling ‘Bows on the field, there are concerns about taking a dangerous backward step off of it. The kind that, if the charge were to be upheld, should make UH officials think long and hard about whether the heretofore precedent of a three-game suspension is really the deterrent it was meant to be. Until this latest case, coach Norm Chow’s message about drinking and driving seemed to have finally resonated after three DUI cases (and two guilty pleas) in 2012, his inaugural season. It became such a point of emphasis that, along with the speakers and lectures devoted to the topic, Chow distributed cards with phone numbers for players to call for a ride. "They can call me, and I’ll come get ’em," Chow had said to drive home the point. And, if that didn’t get their attention, then there were three-game suspensions meted out in two of the cases. So, what are we to think if the allegation against Iosefa, one of the team’s most veteran and widely admired players — and a co-captain at that — is proven true? That’s something UH officials need to strongly consider after they meet with the fifth-year senior this morning to review his case. Although Chow and athletic director Ben Jay have already talked twice, Jay said there may not be an immediate determination of Iosefa’s status. "We’re still in the midst of gathering information," Jay said. "We need to find out more in regards to the actual arrest. We have to afford due process to Joey," Jay said. "I want to hear his side of the story and I want to do it with Norm." An arrest constitutes a violation of the football team’s rules, though Iosefa is allowed to remain on scholarship and attend classes pending disposition. If Iosefa took the wheel impaired, he did so with plenty to lose on several levels. Foremost, of course, being the health and lives of himself, his passenger and people on the road around them. Beyond that there are career aspirations for somebody who had, perhaps, been UH’s leading pro prospect until the ankle injury that has sidelined him since the Oregon State game. Running backs are a plentiful commodity for the NFL and these days — more than ever, legal issues are winnowing the field. UH has, so far, been lucky that none of its players, other motorists or bystanders have been hurt in any of the DUI incidents. But that is a run of good fortune nobody wants to see be continually challenged. Reach Ferd Lewis at email@example.com or 529-4820. Previous Story Rare victory helps Hawaii forget about all of the hurt Next Story Has the Big West risen, or have the Wahine slipped?