Reinebold passed over, but ready to be a team player
Jeff Reinebold can't say who will be the defensive coordinator to replace Jerry Glanville at Hawaii. No one can -- officially, anyway.
But he can say who it isn't.
Reinebold, the Warriors' defensive line coach, was pegged as a possibility to become the DC when Glanville left for Portland State last month.
But Reinebold said yesterday he is no longer a candidate for the job.
Greg McMackin, the UH defensive coordinator in 1999, appears ready to resume his former post.
The position is still officially open, but with Reinebold out of the running, McMackin is clearly the top candidate.
"When this first came up, I went to June and told him to put me where he wants me to be, where I can help the team the most," Reinebold said. "Was I disappointed when I didn't get it? Obviously. But the bottom line is I want to be here with these kids."
Reinebold joined UH as a graduate assistant in 2005, despite more than 20 years' experience in college and pro football coaching. Reinebold, who considers himself Polynesian at heart, said at the time that being in Hawaii -- and working with Jones, Glanville and Mouse Davis -- was more important than a more prestigious or profitable position.
Even with the departure of Glanville and Davis (who went to Portland State as offensive coordinator), Reinebold said he would feel like a hypocrite if he left now because he didn't get a promotion.
"I think this is a great opportunity to really make a statement that you can only make in a situation like this," he said. "You tell the kids to be unselfish, accept your role, be a team player. I could say, 'I deserve that opportunity and if I can't have it I'm gonna take my ball and go home.' The players watch that real close. They want to see if you're full of (crap)."
He said there might be a time for him to leave the program, "But it ain't today."
Reinebold said he has met with McMackin, and he has a full comprehension of the 4-3 base defense McMackin would want to run at UH.
"The scheme is identical as what we ran in Europe (with the Rhein Fire) in 1999 and 2000, when we had the best defense in the league," Reinebold said. "The adjustments are the same. It was like a deja vu moment. It has an answer for anything an offense throws at you, and the players can pin their ears back and run and play. There's no paralysis by analysis."
The defensive linemen UH will have in spring camp -- plus others Reinebold recruited who arrive in the fall -- can thrive in a four-down set, he said.
"It doesn't matter what scheme -- we've got players," Reinebold said. "It's exciting to me. This defense has a chance to be something really special this year. I've coached on a championship team and on an undefeated team, and it's rare. I want to experience it again.
"I want to see Michael's (defensive tackle Lafaele) senior year be as special as it can be. When the players give you everything, a real bond's been built."
Amani Purcell, Karl Noa, John Fonoti and Victor Clore are among the returning defensive ends in camp. David Veikune is "a natural 4-3 end," Reinebold said.
They -- along with JC transfer Josh Leonard and others coming in the fall -- will try to replace Ikaika Alama-Francis and Melila Purcell. Both might be drafted by NFL teams this month.
Keala Watson, Fale Laeli, Rocky Savaiigaea and Siave Seti join Lafaele in the middle.
"These guys have all played in games, winning games," Reinebold said. "Not just in mop-up roles, but they have game experience in crucial situations."