Coaching hunt

Somebody who’s close to the situation told somebody who’s not, who then told me, that at least five people already have interviewed with the advisory panel that will assist the UH AD in choosing the next football head coach.

Yes, I know that’s a long sentence, and probably not very helpful, but that’s all I know from a nobody who knows somebody.

Either way, it’s senior week.

Graduate assistant Derek Deardorff should be acknowledged. He is set to earn his second master’s degree.

Also, Bo Montgomery, a former UH defensive end, has done some behind-the-scenes work to help the program.

Kudos to two unheralded workers.


  1. Tanman November 27, 2015 10:19 am

    Could those be JJ, Nick R., R. Miano, I. Jasper and D. Aranda? If JJ not going to apply until later, could that be D. Babers?

  2. cobupiami November 27, 2015 10:23 am

    Go BOWS!!!

  3. SteveM November 27, 2015 10:35 am

    Good morning everyone!

    Wow, ST, that’s pretty close to the source! That’s better than what my barber’s nephew, who has a friend related to a cousin’s son-in-law who is a janitor in the UHAD building said… ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Fat Jeff November 27, 2015 10:39 am


    That is all

  5. Trunks420 November 27, 2015 10:41 am

    I hear Fresno State is firing there Offense coordinator.
    Maybe we can get him for our Head coach

  6. WWF November 27, 2015 10:48 am

    Is someone working with UH admin to provide the newly selected HC, a higher salary cap to enable him to select successful, proven assistant coaches?

  7. amela November 27, 2015 11:11 am

    Trunks really?

  8. What??? November 27, 2015 11:17 am

    Trunks is joking. I hope he’s joking.

  9. David J. November 27, 2015 11:37 am

    GO WARRIORS! BUT GIVE ME A BREAK!. Some of you have the worst choice in mind!. Then you had in Norm Chow!. All the pick you are thinking of is all wrong!. Then you should try to get the Head Coach of Navy! Or Former University of Texas Mike Brown or former Head Coach from other larger universities with great and longer experience with bowl win too!. By now you know that all your coach will be gone for next year! Already two coaches is gone from the University of Hawaii football program! So how is next?. But, I’m still so proud of some Hawaii peoples! They go out to support the University of Hawaii football program!. Like every games of 20,000 or more fans to show up!. Not like over here in Las Vegas. They had only bring in less then 8,000 fans or less per games this season! Plus more then the other teams support come and see their team play! Like this simple UCLA brought over 16.000 fans to see them play UNLV and Las Vegas had only 3,000 fans!. I really didn’t know how was the home team were that day!. So whatever happened to university of hawaii football program keep on supporting them and don’t let the mainland people put you guys down!. Because people in Hawaii have the biggest heart in they’re teams!

  10. makekane November 27, 2015 11:40 am

    Great work ST ! S.A. must be proud of the due diligence you put forth vetting your creditable sources. Also—–regarding BO–can you add the specifics? ……I bet there are a lot of people that do a ton of “Behind the Scenes Work” that help the program.

  11. Unkanesson November 27, 2015 11:40 am

    People are tossing out wild ideas, so here’s another:
    The way things are going, Chip Kelly might be considering returning to college football…

  12. David J. November 27, 2015 11:46 am

    I’m really proud for Norm Chow!. What he did and help my best friend son to graduate from USC. He is now a CEO of a large casino company. If not for his help my best friend would be seeing his son in jail. Because Norm Chow teach the kids about the world out there besides playing football or other sports! Great Thanks for Norm Chow! He there when need the most!

  13. Bugaz November 27, 2015 11:48 am

    June Jones.

  14. David J. November 27, 2015 11:50 am

    You are danm seriously right! Unkanesson!. Why not Chip Kelly!. He will be a great Head Coach at University of Hawaii.

  15. Bugaz November 27, 2015 11:51 am


  16. Andrew November 27, 2015 12:16 pm

    It’s hilarious reading posts when people throw out names like Chip Kelly for the UH job. C’mon people get real. That will never happen.

  17. clyde November 27, 2015 12:18 pm

    Off topic … for the old-timers out there … RIP: Wally Tsutsumi. If you have to ask, then you’re too young.

  18. Kapahulu November 27, 2015 12:39 pm

    I noticed that in this mornings Obituary for Wally Tsutsumi. He lived to be 100 years old. I never knew what is full time job was until today.
    He brings back a lot of memories during small kid time. RIP.

  19. Kimosabey November 27, 2015 12:39 pm

    Did you contact those mentioned to see if they are in the group of five? A rumor is not real reporting so call them. We need a big list of coaches as there is not a hunt but only a posting online. Hunting means active work to recruit a coach. I like Baber but is he interested? We Know about two others like JJ. They were called.

  20. 808 November 27, 2015 12:40 pm

    When the first wave of interest started surfacing after Chow’s firing, I thought June Jones was a lock. Now, I am not so sure. I think Matlin is looking for someone younger to build the program.


    Chip Kelly would probably bankrupt UH if he was a serious candidate and was chosen. I’m sure he is enjoying his multimillion dollar salary.

  21. SteveM November 27, 2015 12:40 pm

    Clyde — Wally Tsutsumi from the Civic Auditorium days?
    RIP Wally.

  22. Buffoman November 27, 2015 12:54 pm

    Wally Tsutsumi. What a perfect ref for our passion for “rassling” back in the day. I used to get upset with him when he kept getting knocked out or out of position in the championship matches allowing the “bad guy” the opportunity to win.

    So much fun when life was simplier. Now lets talk roller derby at the civic and stopping for a peach melba on the way home at the dairyman at the corner of Beretania and Keeaumoku.

  23. z November 27, 2015 12:57 pm

    I hope we get a coach from a winning program.

  24. clyde November 27, 2015 12:57 pm

    SteveM: Yup, one and the same. As Kapahulu pointed out, he was 100 when he passed. Wally played his role well. He was dwarfed by the wrestlers, but he really was quite buffed, and was a former wrestler and judo champion. Fond memories of those days, but let’s not hijack Stephen’s blog …

  25. oneseason November 27, 2015 1:29 pm

    Having an end of season rival match like Oregon – Oregon St (The Civil War), Washington – Washington St (Apple Cup), … would be great for UH. No matter how good or bad the season, real rivalry matches at the end of the year maintain fan interest til the bitter (sometimes) end. The chance to mess over your rival’s bowl ambitions or national ranking just can’t be beat ๐Ÿ™‚

  26. Sangamon Keith November 27, 2015 1:31 pm

    #6 I agree with looking for help on salary caps, but my bigger concern is getting competitive salaries for the assistant coaches … particularly the off and def coordinators.

    Glad to hear that five candidates have already been interviewed. I’m still very supportive of June, Rich, Rolo and Aranda. June is the purist on the run ‘n shoot; Rich is the big heart who bleeds UH football; Rolo brings hands-on knowledge of run ‘n shoot and pistol offensives; and Aranda is the defensive genius that can bring championships. Still as a fan, I will start fresh and be positive of whoever gets the position.

    Just my opinion, Keith

  27. Lowtone123 November 27, 2015 1:35 pm

    Probably won’t talk to any current coaches until their respective seasons are over.

  28. hitmanhart November 27, 2015 1:38 pm

    aloha everyone !! the 5 are They are Rich Ellerson, June Jones, Rich Miano, Brian Norwood and Nick Rolovich.

  29. oneseason November 27, 2015 1:41 pm

    UH Athletics is putting Men’s Basketball and Volleyball mini-pack tickets on sale for today (Black Friday) and Monday (Cyber Monday). For adults, $44 for four games and $20 for students (4-18) … plus the $6 handling fee for each MBB mini-pack. Great price but seriously, a $6 handling fee for a $20 ticket package?

  30. 808 November 27, 2015 1:43 pm

    Per SA, 5 finalist interviewed.

    If these are the only candidates that will be interviewed, I think it would an easy choice for Matlin.

  31. kaleiguy November 27, 2015 1:54 pm


  32. Former UH Athlete November 27, 2015 1:56 pm

    I seriously doubt any current HCs or coordinators could have done in-person interviews at UH if they have games to prepare for. The logistics of flying to/from Hawaii for a day or two don’t make sense if they are currently working.

    Maybe yes if they did phone interviews. Maybe some of the advisory staff flew to the mainland to do the interviews?

    JJ and Miano possibly have interviewed since live here and they don’t have much else to do.

  33. Former UH Athlete November 27, 2015 2:00 pm

    I can’t believe Chip Kelly’s name was mentioned… That’s beyond delusional.

    I’d give that thought a little more credit if UH was going to offer PAC-12 salaries ($2M+) but even that may not be enough.

  34. Paul Yamashita November 27, 2015 2:00 pm

    Chip Kelly??? Are you serious? You think an NFL coach is gonna come down and Coach Hawaii. We need a local coach with local ties who can recruit and further our program

  35. George November 27, 2015 2:03 pm

    We should know who the 60 were so we can see this is as good as it gets. Matlin doesn’t make final decision. President does with downtown folks.

  36. tom November 27, 2015 2:13 pm


    Per Ferd Lewis’ story, “Barring a late addition, they would be the only finalists interviewed” which means that there are five finalist for the job unless some late addition is added.

    Somehow, I don’t think there will be acylate additions all things considered.

  37. kev-1 November 27, 2015 2:15 pm

    Ellerson??? A big no thank you there. His record as a HC is dismal.

  38. kev-1 November 27, 2015 2:17 pm

    Mr. Yamashita. .. I’m not saying that Chip Kelly would consider UH, but you do know that JJ was an NFL coach that came down to college to coach UH, right?

  39. warriorsanddolphins November 27, 2015 2:20 pm

    June Jones would be my first choice and i think Brian Norwood would be a darkhorse canidate. My concern with Norwood would be how he would react when he finds out how hard it is to recruit somebody from the mainland to Hawaii. Jones already knows this and would have a easier time in getting the program back on its feet.

  40. z November 27, 2015 2:41 pm

    Peyton Manning.

  41. z November 27, 2015 2:42 pm

    Todd Orlando.

  42. cocobean November 27, 2015 2:52 pm

    If Ferd is correct that barring any last minute candidate I’d go with JJ of the 5 interviewed. I blogged earlier JJ should talk to Miano and Rolo and come in as a united front under him. For many fans this would be a coaching dream team.

    I think of the interviewees JJ would be get off to the fastest start in putting together a staff and begin recruiting. I can see him keeping Abe and Lance on board and trying to recruit Miano and Rolo.

  43. oldtimer808 November 27, 2015 2:53 pm

    #9 Please can you go and take an English course on grammer. It really hurts to try to read anything that you write in this blog. If you are not aware of your writing short comings now you know. I’m not trying to hurt your feelings but give you a chance to improve your writing skills. Mahalo.

  44. oldtimer808 November 27, 2015 2:54 pm

    Of the five interviewed candidates, June Jones should be hired. Do it now AD and stop with this wishy washy hiring process.

  45. z November 27, 2015 2:55 pm

    I like coach Ellerson. Even Bobby Ross struggled at Army.

  46. mileHIwarrior November 27, 2015 2:57 pm

    Interesting top 5 with obvious favorites in JJ, Rolo, and Miano. Kinda surprised with Ellerson and then a dark horse indeed with Norwood. Gonna be a bit of a homer and root for my fellow Radford alum, Brian Norwood.

  47. S.peezy November 27, 2015 3:04 pm

    I’d like JJ or DB, I know DB is prolly a long shot but hey….never say never. GO BOWS!!!

  48. S.peezy55 November 27, 2015 3:05 pm

    Iโ€™d like JJ or DB, I know DB is prolly a long shot but heyโ€ฆ.never say never. GO BOWS!!!

  49. oldtimer808 November 27, 2015 3:16 pm

    Dino Babers will not be coming to Hawaii. Big 5 schools are looking at him.

  50. akuhead2 November 27, 2015 3:20 pm

    Wally Tsutsumi – 1 -2 -3. RIP
    All the love. Aloha.

  51. Rodney November 27, 2015 3:20 pm

    Matlin can we announce JJ as HC
    on Monday .Rid Naeole as Interm.
    So we can start recruiting (DL,DBs
    and SBs) Pllease!!!!!!!

  52. Warrior Fan November 27, 2015 3:31 pm

    If these are the final candidates, we should go with Brian Norwood.. We can’t live back in the glory days of JJ.. Miano & Rolo.. Those days are gone & behind us. JJ isn’t the answer..

  53. 808 November 27, 2015 3:33 pm

    If Matlin has the green light to hire a HC now, he should make the call.

    Or, maybe UH is waiting for someone else to finish the season to get interviewed?

    Maybe a behind the scene power broker is holding up the process. It wouldn’t be the first time someone is allowed to influence the UH president and chancellor of who should be hired as the football HC.

  54. Buffoman November 27, 2015 3:35 pm

    ST, I like what you’ve done. Must be all of the rain on the windward side that prompted this action. So you throw out a highly speculative, no source line that immediately incites a feeding frenzy. Like chumming the waters.

    There’s no hooks, just feedbait so nothing sticks. Terrific and fun to read. Hat’s off to you.

  55. Warrior Fan November 27, 2015 3:37 pm

    Was hoping for Kalani Sitake or Joe Salavea really… Whoever is the new HC he needs to get V. Tata (HC Kahuku) as the DC! Tata coached at UCLA , Stanford so he has connections for recruiting and also showed us how to dominate HS football with Defense!

  56. UH4eva November 27, 2015 3:38 pm

    I’ll still take Babers if he applies after Saturday. If not go with Jones and his staff could be Rolo offense, Norwood Defensive Coord, Miano Associate HC, Cal Lee LB, Ellerson O-Line, Lelie Receivers, Eliminian Secondary, Jeff Reinebold, special teams,

  57. S.peezy55 November 27, 2015 3:48 pm

    Like I said…never say never

  58. graham November 27, 2015 3:48 pm

    I couldn’t be more disappointed with the 5 candidates. Really don’t know if Ill continue being a fan. Those 5 will lead the program right into the ground.

  59. graham November 27, 2015 3:52 pm

    I wanted someone from a big time program. Jones and Ellerson are old and coming off some unsuccessful runs at HC. Miano couldn’t get a good HC job a big Texas high school. And Rolo and Norwich just don’t do it for me, they haven’t been that good as assistants.

  60. Former UH Athlete November 27, 2015 3:52 pm

    Sam Spangler reports 5 finalists:

    June Jones
    Nick Rolovich
    Rich Miano
    Brian Norwood
    Rich Ellerson

  61. Former UH Athlete November 27, 2015 3:54 pm

    This is what $500k and under looks like folks.

    I trust Matlin and the advisory group vetted well, so that means few, if any, Power 5 conference coordinator with any sort of Hawaii ties applied.

  62. graham November 27, 2015 3:54 pm

    Ellerson would be a laughable choice

  63. UH4eva November 27, 2015 4:00 pm

    Impressive bio on Brian Norwood. Also Associate HC at Tulsa.

  64. S.peezy55 November 27, 2015 4:01 pm

    Everybody knows the circumstances with DB but that doesn’t mean anybody can’t list DB as there fave for HC.

  65. Former UH Athlete November 27, 2015 4:02 pm

    Based on the final 5, I’d have to think JJ is liking his chances.

    I’m curious about Brian Norwood.

    I’m not too interested in Rolo or Miano. Rolo has done ok with the previous coach’s players but he has not recruited well as proven by statistical declines with 2011 UH (year 4) and 2014&2015 Nevada (years 3-4).

    Ellerson does not interest me at all. I’m actually pretty shocked he made the final five, which makes me think the applicant list was super weak.

  66. Buffoman November 27, 2015 4:03 pm

    Are they finalists or were they just the ones who have been interviewed? I too hope Spangler has it as “interviewed” and not finalists. That group does not excite me.

  67. 808 November 27, 2015 4:07 pm

    #59, It sounded hilarious when I read your post for the first time. But, what you said made sense. Who would give up power 5 conference money to coach here?

    This is what 500k looks like.

    I’d be scared to see what 250k would look like if UH ever got to that point.

  68. ai-ee-soos November 27, 2015 4:07 pm

    If he doesn’t get HC, the new guy should consider :

    Rich Ellerson for DC.

    He was Tomey’s DC at AZ, during the ” Desert Swarm ‘ years.

    They were damned good.

  69. Former UH Athlete November 27, 2015 4:08 pm

    At this point I’m interested in seeing the list of 60 who applied, but I don’t think UH is obligated to release it.

  70. Former UH Athlete November 27, 2015 4:10 pm

    66… That was the 1990’s

  71. al November 27, 2015 4:14 pm

    As I mentioned weeks ago.
    It won’t be JJ nor miano.
    Ellerson did not fair well at Army. And you don’t recruit to Army.
    He ran a non passing offense.

    Norwood is intriguing.
    However, my bet is/has been Rolo.

  72. Former UH Athlete November 27, 2015 4:15 pm

    49, all good thoughts by logistically that can’t happen because the contract has yet to be negotiated.

    The candidates may have talked about salary, but there are always a bunch of negotiating for the smaller stuff that goes on after selecting the coach. Stuff like bonus amounts/structure, and dare I say it…. Early Termination clauses.

  73. Former UH Athlete November 27, 2015 4:17 pm

    49 and with UH getting spanked with the Gib Arnold contract debacle, I can almost guarantee the contract will take forever to be processed.

    Eron Ganot didn’t actually sign his contract until just before MBB training camp, some 6 months after he was named Head BB coach.

  74. Former UH Athlete November 27, 2015 4:19 pm

    Plus the rest of the staff will take at least a few weeks to assemble. Each assistant position has to go through a similar, but less scrutinized, process as the HC spot.

  75. Former UH Athlete November 27, 2015 4:21 pm

    The good news is that UH appears to be on track to name a coach before the Dec 15 dead period, so the new coach can at least start to touch basis with recruits to let them know he’s there before the dead period.

  76. Buffoman November 27, 2015 4:25 pm

    If those named were/are the finalists, the others that made up the list must have been inexperienced, unqualified and probably did not include the likes of Babers, Jasper, Aranda, Sitake (sp?) Or others folks had speculated. Can’t see some of the “named” finalist being better than those.

  77. oneseason November 27, 2015 4:32 pm

    There are no surprise finalist candidates out of the 60 applications, and that surprises me.

  78. hitmanhart November 27, 2015 4:36 pm

    UH should name the new tomorrow before the game !!

  79. Mr. Pacheco November 27, 2015 4:38 pm

    The fact that two of the finalists have been out of college coaching, one for 2 years (quitting on his team during the season), and the other for 4 years is troubling. You know what they say, “In Hawaii, it’s who you know, not what you can do.”

    Why locals refuse to acknowledge this, is beyond me:

  80. oneseason November 27, 2015 4:41 pm

    #74 well, the search for the UH President turned up two candidates … the interim guy who wasn’t supposed to be eligible for the job, and a senior military officer with no (as I recall) experience in academics. It seemed the fix was in for that job. Hopefully that isn’t the case for the UH Football coach.

  81. 3-Prong November 27, 2015 4:49 pm

    Nooooooooooooolooo! Rolo? Really?

  82. WarriorMojo November 27, 2015 4:54 pm

    Held that one VERY close to the chest, huh, ST?

  83. 3-Prong November 27, 2015 4:55 pm

    No comment. Absolutely no comment.

  84. Stephen Tsai November 27, 2015 4:56 pm

    It’s Rolo. New post:

  85. Come on, man! November 27, 2015 4:57 pm

    Wow. That was a fast hiring announcement.

  86. Old School Dave November 27, 2015 4:58 pm

    Don’t know how reliable this is from FootballScoop, but sources say that Nick Rolovich will become UH’s next coach:

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