ANDY PHILLIPS / 1976-2006
STAR-BULLETIN FILE / 1999
Lineman Andy Phillips was an important part of the offense when Hawaii snapped its 19-game losing streak in 1999.
Lineman was UH starter for 2 years
"Big Red" played for the 0-12 Rainbows in 1998 and Jones' 9-4 squad in 1999
Andy Phillips, who started at guard on the 1999 University of Hawaii football team, died Sunday in an automobile accident near Albuquerque, N.M.
Sunday was Phillips' 30th birthday, according to UH records.
NASCAR Busch Series rookie Spencer Clark also died in the accident. Phillips was a member of Clark's crew, and they were returning to Las Vegas from a race in North Carolina.
Phillips, known as "Big Red" to his UH teammates, was "definitely instrumental in our success," Warriors coach June Jones said yesterday.
Phillips figured in the worst and best of recent times for UH football, suffering through the 0-12 season of 1998 and then enjoying the 9-4 turnaround of Jones' first season as coach.
The two-year starter was a team leader who was among a committee of players who had input in choosing the new coach after Fred vonAppen was fired.
Phillips was an honorable mention All-Western Athletic Conference choice in 1999 and played in the 2000 Hula Bowl. He had a tryout with the San Diego Chargers.
"I had talked to him last January, he was looking at getting into coaching, so I called some people for him," Jones said.
"In 1999 he was one of the five guys who lined up for us every game. He was a leader on the offensive line (that included future NFL players Kaulana Noa and Adrian Klemm) and competed as hard as anybody. He had a lot of pride in our team and who he was. It's a sad day."
Phillips, who was born in Texas, was a 1995 graduate of Casa Grande Union High School in Arizona near Phoenix. A member of Bob Wagner's final UH recruiting class, he chose the Rainbows over Arizona State. He lettered from 1996 through 1999.
According to information Phillips submitted to UH in 1996, his relatives included mother Jaqueline, brother Anthony and sisters Christyle and Joli.
Funeral arrangements are pending.