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University of Hawaii slotback is kicked off team

  • CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARADVERTISER.COM
                                Wide receiver Melquise Stovall during practice, Oct. 16. Stovall, a fourth-year junior from Lancaster College, has been removed from the active roster.

    CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Wide receiver Melquise Stovall during practice, Oct. 16. Stovall, a fourth-year junior from Lancaster College, has been removed from the active roster.

One of the Mountain West Conference’s top returners is no longer on the University of Hawaii football team.

Head coach Nick Rolovich confirmed that Melquise Stovall, a fourth-year junior from Lancaster, Calif., has been removed from the active roster.

“There are certain expectations required of a football student-athlete here at the University of Hawaii,” Rolovich said. “We hold all our student-athletes to these standards and expect them to represent our football program to the highest degree. We wish Melquise the best as he moves forward.”

Stovall joined the Rainbow Warriors in January after two years at California and the 2018 season with Riverside City College. Stovall was a consensus four-star prospect at Paraclete High School.

Stovall played in five games this season, starting one at left slotback. He caught 18 passes for 248 yards and four touchdowns, including two in this past weekend’s game against Air Force. But he was most noted for his judgment on punt returners and his bursts on kickoff returns. His kick-return average of 27.4 yards is third best among Mountain West players. Stovall also has been used as a motion back.

Stovall did not play in the second half on Saturday after being assessed a personal foul following a fair catch in the second quarter.

After that, right slotback Cedric Byrd was used on punt returns, and right wideout JoJo Ward returned kickoffs.

The Warriors have several options to fill Stovall’s slotback role. Freshman Lincoln Victor and junior James Phillips have played slot. But both have played in four games — the maximum appearances to maintain a redshirt year.

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