Warriors wish Tomey well—after today


POSTED: Saturday, November 21, 2009

SAN JOSE, Calif. » It's been more than two decades since Dick Tomey's tenure as Hawaii football coach ended, yet his imprint on the program endures.

So those bridging that era and the present certainly wish the current San Jose State coach well as he approaches retirement.

After tonight, that is.

Tomey, a member of the UH Circle of Honor, announced his retirement as San Jose State head coach this week effective at the end of a trying season, adding a touch of nostalgia to today's Western Athletic Conference game.

Motivation will be in abundance at Spartan Stadium. While the Warriors (4-6, 2-5 WAC) have bowl hopes to protect, the Spartans (1-8, 0-5) will try to give Tomey another win over his former school before retiring in the islands.

“;(Tomey) is going to have those guys ready to play,”; said UH associate coach Rich Miano. “;We're going to have to play a great game because they're going to be fired up.”;





        Who: Hawaii (4-6, 2-5 WAC) at San Jose State (1-8, 0-5)

When: 3 p.m. today


TV: PPV Ch. 255


Radio: KKEA, 1420-AM




Miano and assistant head coach George Lumpkin represent the remaining links between Tomey's UH career and the current staff.

Lumpkin served as an assistant throughout Tomey's 10 years in Manoa, while Miano developed from a walk-on into an All-WAC safety under his leadership.

“;One of the most influential coaches of my life,”; Miano said.

“;When I first came to the University of Hawaii, I admired him so much, you put a guy like that on a pedestal. He commanded respect. ... When he spoke you listened. Whatever he said to do, you did. You just believed you were going to win, you believed you were learning the fundamentals of the game, the fundamentals of life.”;

Likewise, Lumpkin recalls Tomey's acumen with Xs and Os as just a portion of his effectiveness as a coach.

“;He really strived for perfection and discipline in a lot of ways, but at the same time was very compassionate for people, especially young people,”; Lumpkin said. “;He did all the motivating and talking to kids and helping them to understand how to be the best they can be.”;

It's that motivational ability that has the Warriors anticipating a fierce matchup despite the Spartans' struggles so far this season.

“;He's a well-respected coach in Hawaii. I remember growing up hearing about him, that's one person you have to respect,”; UH linebacker Blaze Soares said. “;He came to (Hawaii), he poured his heart out, and it's going to be awesome to play against him again.”;

Rugged defense was a cornerstone for Tomey's Hawaii teams, and this year's Warriors are coming off their most effective defensive performance of the season in last week's 24-6 win over New Mexico State.

After preparing for the run the last two weeks, the Warriors will have to shift gears for a San Jose State offense that leans toward the passing game while ranking last in the WAC in rushing.

Quarterback Jordan La Secla is completing 60.7 percent of his throws with eight touchdowns and seven interceptions. Most of his throws go to Kevin Jurovich (51 receptions, 75.4 yards per game).

“;He's changed now,”; Miano said, referring to Tomey's reputation for conservative offense back in his UH days. “;He spreads you all over the field; you've still got your trick plays, you've still got special teams things you've got be aware of. He keeps you thinking. You never know what you're going to get from this guy.”;

The status of two of Hawaii's featured performers on offense remains a game-time decision, as quarterback Bryant Moniz (bruised ribs) and receiver Greg Salas (sprained foot) were limited in practice this week.

Shane Austin, coming off a strong relief appearance a week ago, took most of the first-team snaps in practice throughout the week to ready himself if called upon.

Establishing the run as a threat early in the game helped the Warriors jump out to fast starts in their wins the last two weeks and can take some of the steam out of the pass rush and relieve pressure on the quarterback.

“;We want to run it, get them to respect it,”; running back Leon Wright-Jackson said. “;Big runs is just our whole team doing a good job; our offensive line blocking, the receivers running (defenders) off or blocking. That's the reason the big runs have been popping.”;

Like Hawaii, the Spartans have struggled with injuries in a season that began with games against USC, Utah and Stanford with their lone win coming against Cal Poly on Sept. 26.

Still, rather than being a distraction, Tomey's announcement could become a rallying point for the Spartans in the season's final stretch.

“;I promise you were going to refocus ourselves and put something together this week we can really be proud of,”; Tomey said.


Island flavor

The Hawaii Chamber of Commerce of Northern California and UH Alumni Association will create a festive environment both before and after the game. The groups planned gatherings in San Francisco and San Jose the last two days, as well as a pregame tailgate and postgame party. The HCCNC and UHAA have sponsored the annual Road Warrior Tailgate for 11 years.


































































































































































































































































































































































































































































Z7Jovonte Taylor5-9170
Y2Jon Medeiros5-9185
LT77Aaron Kia6-5290
LG64Ray Hisatake6-3315
C55John Estes6-3300
RG74Raphael Ieru6-2315
RT51Austin Hansen6-4285
H1Greg Salas6-2200 or88Ryan Henry5-9170
X21Kealoha Pilares5-11200
QB17Bryant Moniz6-0190 or10Shane Austin6-0200
RB23Leon Wright-Jackson6-1215
DE90Elliott Purcell6-3255 or98Liko Satele6-2260
DT92Rocky Savaiigaea6-2305
DT95Vaughn Meatoga6-2290
DE58Fetaiagogo Fonoti6-2255
SLB59R.J. Kiesel-Kauhane5-11225
MLB50Mana Lolotai6-0230
BLB53Blaze Soares6-1245
CB2Lametrius Davis6-0190
SAM9Spencer Smith5-11205
FS43Mana Silva6-1220
CB10Kawika Ornellas5-9170
PK20Scott Enos5-9180
P31Alex Dunnachie6-3235
Snap45Luke Ingram6-5210
Hold11Inoke Funaki5-11205
KR7Jovonte Taylor5-9170
PR1Greg Salas6-2




WR1Josh Harrison5-11183
LT65Fred Koloto6-3290
LG72Isaac Leatiota6-4305
C70Robbie Reed6-3290
RG71Nathaniel Timo6-0310
RT78Andres Vargas6-4305
TE82Ryan Otten6-5230
QB12Jordan La Secla6-3198
RB22Lamon Muldrow5-9210
RB15Brandon Rutley5-10190
WR88Jalal Beauchman6-4220
WR6Kevin Jurovich6-0190
DE43Travis Johnson6-3235
DT92Pablo Garcia6-2290
DT96Adonis Davis6-2295
DE91Joe Nigos6-2260
LB14Travis Jones6-1230
LB93Justin Cole6-3240
CB19Peyton Thompson5-11180
CB25Ronnie Yell5-9175
S2Duke Ihenacho6-1210
S40Tuike Tuipulotu5-10205 
S17Tanner Burns6-1185
PK34Tyler Cope6-1180
KO35Philip Zavala6-1200
Punt35Philip Zavala6-1200
LS51Matt Wigley6-2230
Hold35Philip Zavala6-1200
PR25Ronnie Yell5-9175
KR15Brandon Rutley5-10190