American Samoa venture includes UH, SMU staffs
This should make for some interesting recruiting competition.
Ten football coaches, five from Hawaii and five from SMU, will conduct the first June Jones American Samoa Football Academy a week from tomorrow in Pago Pago.
The UH coaches are Greg McMackin, Alex Gerke, Nick Rolovich, Brian Smith and Craig Stutzmann. The SMU coaches are Jones, Dennis McKnight, Wes Suan, Jeff Reinebold and Frank Gansz.
The June Jones Foundation is sponsoring the academy, as well as $2,000 college football scholarships that will go to five of the expected 550 participants, foundation director Kevin Kaplan said.
"They don't have to go to Hawaii or SMU. They can go anywhere they want, as long as it's in the United States," Kaplan said.
Current and former NFL players Jesse Sapolu, Maa Tanuvasa, Mel Purcell, Reagan Mauia, Paul Soliai and Leo Goeas are also scheduled to appear, Kaplan said.
It is McMackin's first trip to American Samoa.
"It's going to be a fun deal," McMackin said. "I'm really looking forward to it because they're a big part of the Warrior Nation."
It will cap a week of island-hopping for the UH head coach who replaced Jones. McMackin is on the Big Island for the Dolphin Days celebration and will play in Jones' annual celebrity tournament Sunday and Monday at Hokulia. Then McMackin has his own golf tournament on Kauai next Tuesday and Wednesday.
Meanwhile, mediation continues in a dispute between Jones and UH. At issue is $400,008 the school says Jones owes it for leaving for SMU before the end of his contract, which would have been the end of this month.
Baseball camps coming
UH baseball has added infield defense to its lineup of baseball camps.
It will be Aug. 2-3, the same days as the third hitting session of the summer. Other hitting, pitching and catching clinics are July 4-6 and July 25-27.
Call 956-6247 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Meanwhile, coach Mike Trapasso said he is still awaiting word on whether recruit Kolten Wong will sign with the Minnesota Twins organization or come to UH. The Star-Bulletin Position Player of the Year from Kamehameha-Hawaii is hoping for a bigger bonus than the Twins originally offered.
"They're still talking," Trapasso said. "In the next couple of weeks this should get a little clearer."
Major League organizations have until Aug. 15 to sign their draftees.
Also, UH catcher Landon Hernandez, a 50th-round pick of the Detroit Tigers, said he still had not heard from the team as of Tuesday. Hernandez wants to go pro, but can still return to Manoa for his senior season.
Golf coach wanted
A search committee is being formed and a new women's golf coach should be in place by the end of summer, athletic director Jim Donovan
Ashley Biffle, who led UH to consecutive third-place finishes in the WAC the past two years, resigned after four seasons for family reasons.
Football seeks 2009 game
Donovan said he is not close to having a final game scheduled for the 2009 football season.
SMU is among several possibilities he said.
"We're working diligently with several different schools. But there's nothing at this point," Donovan said. "Our goal is to have it done before we open this season at Florida (on Aug. 30)."
Wahine clinic changed
The women's football clinic featuring McMackin and his wife, Heather
, has been rescheduled.
It will be Aug. 19 at 7 p.m. at the athletic complex lecture hall. It was previously set for Aug. 21.
The cost is $10, which includes refreshments and a football manual. Those interested in attending can call 956-6508.