Galdeira, Letuli make Boise trip
A trip to Boise probably wouldn't show up on a game show's prize board, but the ticket to Idaho represents a nice payoff for a couple of Hawaii football players.
After not making the team's first road trip of the season, sophomore defensive back Guyton Galdeira and freshman guard Laupepa Letuli earned seats on the Warriors' charter flight yesterday in advance of tomorrow's matchup with No. 25 Boise State.
Kickoff for the Western Athletic Conference opener for both the Warriors and Broncos is set for 2:05 p.m. Hawaii time.
Neither player accompanied the team to Alabama to open the season. They got their first action in last week's win over UNLV at Aloha Stadium.
Galdeira made the 60-player travel squad for his play on special teams. Letuli is the backup to starting left guard Hercules Satele and has also worked his way onto special teams as well.
"It's a tough decision sometimes and you have to take the 60 guys who fit best for the team you're playing that week," said graduate assistant Dennis McKnight, who works with the Warriors offensive line and special teams units.
Galdeira, a 5-foot-7, 263-pound graduate of Kamehameha, played in seven games on special teams last season and finished with four tackles, making the travel roster for games at Idaho and San Jose State.
He was put on the list for tomorrow's game when Ryan Keomaka, a backup cornerback and contributor on special teams, was briefly taken off the roster before being reinstated a day later.
"He really did a great job on our kickoff coverage last week and fired upfield," said assistant coach Mouse Davis, who coordinates the special teams. "He's a great kid and not gonna make many mistakes and he can really run."
Letuli, a redshirt freshman from Torrance, Calif., had a broken hand in fall camp that kept him out of practice for a day and has since worked up the depth chart both on the line and on special teams, helping his stock when the coaches finalized the list.
"He got to play finally against UNLV and he played his butt off," McKnight said. "It's not so much any one thing, it's an accumulation of what he's done since camp started.
"He's now a backup on some special teams stuff so when we're looking at guys who can go he's all of a sudden moved up the ladder because of his practice habits."
Game-time call: Inside linebacker Solomon Elimimian (strained right knee) sat out most of yesterday's practice, but did make the trip to Boise. Head coach June Jones said it'll be a game-time decision whether he'll play against Boise State.
"He knows what to do. We'll see how he feels Saturday," Jones said.
Elimimian hurt his knee against Alabama and sat out last week's game. He practiced on Tuesday, but was out the last two days. Brad Kalilimoku started at Buck linebacker against UNLV and led the Warriors with six tackles, including one for loss.
"He helps on the sideline, and he's a coach on the field," Jones said of Elimimian.
Receiver Ryan Grice-Mullins (groin) watched most of the team periods yesterday, but the sophomore is expected to be ready tomorrow.
Numbers game: Through two games Hawaii's starting slot receivers -- Grice-Mullins (13 catches for 220 yards) and Davone Bess (18-198) -- have accounted for nearly half of the team's receptions (63 total) and 58 percent of its receiving yardage (719).
Consequently, the team's top four outside receivers have had to be more patient, combining for 16 catches for 170 yards with Ross Dickerson (seven-76) leading the way.
Jones explained the disparity between the inside and outside receivers as a product of the coverages presented by Alabama and UNLV.
"It's the way the defense goes," Jones said. "The ball goes where the defense tells you to go."
In all, 12 Warriors have already caught at least one pass this season.
Another stat that could be a key tomorrow: Boise State is tied for eighth in the country in turnover margin with seven takeaways and two lost. Hawaii is last among the 119 Division I teams with one takeaway and seven lost.
Pass-happy series? A series of football games between teams with two of the most prolific passing offenses in recent college football history is being discussed.
Hawaii and Texas Tech officials are trying to set up games at Lubbock and at Aloha Stadium, UH athletic director Herman Frazier said.
"(Texas Tech coach) Mike Leach is a good friend, and he called wanting to set up some games," Frazier said. "We'd like to play them and will continue to talk."
UH was second in the nation last year with 384.2 passing yards per game in going 5-7. Texas Tech went 9-3 last year, averaging 495.3 yards per game in total offense. The Red Raiders are 2-1 this year after losing 12-3 at TCU last week. UH has three openings for nonconference games in 2007. Hawaii and Texas Tech have never played each other.