McMackin had a hand in one of San Jose State's biggest victories ever


POSTED: Friday, September 26, 2008

As Greg McMackin chips away in carving a place in the Hawaii football program's history books, he fondly recalls a game etched in San Jose State lore.

McMackin coached the secondary and served as recruiting coordinator for the Spartans from 1979 to 1983, and was on hand for one of the school's biggest wins.

It was Nov. 1, 1980, when San Jose State visited Waco, Texas, to face 10th-ranked Baylor, a team led by coach Grant Teaff and featuring running back Walter Abercrombie and linebacker Mike Singletary.

Baylor—a 27-point favorite—led 15-0 early, but thanks to a passing attack coordinated by head coach Jack Elway and assistant Dennis Erickson, the Spartans rallied for a 30-22 victory. Baylor finished the year at 10-2, the only other loss coming to Alabama in the Cotton Bowl.

“;The Southwest Conference was a smash-mouth (league) and they didn't know how to play the pass,”; McMackin recalled. “;We beat them and it was a great win for San Jose State.”;

McMackin's more recent encounters with San Jose State have been quite memorable as well.

He was the defensive coordinator for Hawaii's 62-41 shootout win at Spartan Stadium in 1999, and again last season when the Warriors rallied from a 14-point deficit in the final 4 minutes of regulation before winning in overtime.


Libre back in practice

Running back Daniel Libre practiced for the first time this week as he recovers from a sprained ankle. Libre's return would add even more depth to a backfield that includes Kealoha Pilares, Leon Wright-Jackson, David Farmer and Jayson Rego.

“;He looks like he's ready to go,”; offensive coordinator Ron Lee said.

Linebacker Solomon Elimimian, who's been bothered by a quadriceps injury this week, participated in drills yesterday, though R.J. Keisel-Kauhane again saw playing time with the first unit in the team period.

“;It's a day-to-day thing,”; linebackers coach Cal Lee said.


Short yardage

Blaze Soares' comeback bid hit a snag this week when the linebacker hurt his ankle. He is rehabbing from a calf injury and McMackin said he doesn't plan on redshirting the junior. ... Running back Bryce Kalauoka'aea will have surgery to repair a torn ACL in early October. The Castle grad suffered the injury in last week's Scout Bowl. ... San Jose State is scheduled to arrive today and have a short workout at Aloha Stadium. ... Tomorrow's game will be shown at the Koolau Theatre in Kaneohe. Tickets are $10. A Warrior pass good for four fans is $35.