Hawaii extends its
contract with KKEA

UH adds three years to its
deal with the radio station

Extension could mean expansion for the radio broadcast home of University of Hawaii sports.

The university extended its contract yesterday with KKEA 1420-AM for another three years. According to general manager Don Robbs, this will give the station an opportunity to add more sports to its menu.

"Hopefully, we'll be able to add a few games in a couple of other sports, such as softball and (women's) soccer," Robbs said.

The contract gives the radio broadcast rights for all football, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's volleyball, baseball, softball and soccer. The contract will pay UH more than $1 million over the term of the agreement.

The extension is effective August 1, 2005 and runs through July 31, 2008. Because it was an extension of an existing contract, KKEA only had to submit a proposal; had the proposal not been accepted, the contract then would have gone out to bid.

"Obviously, we're very happy to continue our association with the university's athletics department," Robbs said.

The contract includes rights to the coaches shows but the major product will continue to be the play-by-play of games, both home and away. The station also will continue to broadcast the San Francisco Giants baseball games but does not know which NFL team it will carry yet.

It could be the Oakland Raiders, which would be a switch from the San Francisco 49ers. KKEA is partnered with KGO in San Francisco, which recently dumped the 49ers contract.

Robbs said he is looking into increasing the station's wattage, which is currently at 5,000. The amount is limited by the FCC.

"We recognize there are pockets (of coverage) that are problematic," Robbs said. "We'd like to do something to juice it up."

"We are pleased that our partnership with KKEA will continue," UH athletic director Herman Frazier said in a news release. "We have a great relationship with (KKEA president) Duane Kurisu and his staff and we look forward to working with them to deliver quality broadcasts of UH events to our fans."

Warriors football coach June Jones said he enjoys the exposure his program gets from KKEA's coverage.

"They've done a fantastic job so it's certainly deserving," Jones said. "It's a win-win. And I think highly of (football voices) Bobby (Curran) and Robert (Kekaula)."

Curran, who also is the play-by-play voice for men's basketball, said he looks forward to the next three years.

"I appreciate the continued opportunity to work with UH sports," said Curran, in a phone call from Ruston, La. "The UH sports programs are in great shape, so it's a plus for KKEA."

Star-Bulletin reporter Dave Reardon contributed to this report.

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