Gifford gets second chance

When Nick Rolovich was hired as head coach, he emptied the files, giving each Warrior a fresh start.

Rolovich recently hit the refresh button, moving defensive end Ka‘aumoana Gifford from suspension to a version of probation. Gifford, who had been suspended from team-related activities since an arrest on April 12, will be allowed to participate in the offseason conditioning program that begins next Tuesday.

UH officials determined Gifford showed remorse, in words and deeds, to merit reinstatement.

Rolovich said Gifford still must meet “bench marks” in academics and community service. Attorney Paul Cunney said Gifford did well during the spring semester and is enrolled in UH’s Summer Session I. His situation will continue to be evaluated to determine if further sanctions are necessary.

> Background: In March, Gifford was involved in what his lawyer described as a fender-bender. Cunney said Gifford drove away when he and the other driver could not reach a financial agreement on the damage. Gifford was accused of leaving the scene of an accident, a misdemeanor, and an appearance in District Court was set for April 12. But Gifford missed the appointment because he was arrested that morning for obstruction. Gifford was accused of interfering with the arrest of teammate Kennedy Tulimasealii, who was involved in an incident with an ex-girlfriend. Cunney said Gifford was trying to help cover Tulimasealii, who was not wearing clothes when he was subdued on a McCully Street sidewalk.

> Suspension: At the end of the April 14 spring practice, Rolovich announced Tulimasealii and Gifford were suspended from team activities for an indefinite period. Both players were allowed to remain on scholarship, attend classes, and participate in the athletic department’s study hall. Under the athletic department’s conduct rules, a suspension is an option — not mandatory — for a player charged with a misdemeanor.

> Court: Cunney successfully petitioned to join both cases against Gifford and keep them in District Court. A hearing is scheduled for June 3. Cunney’s hope is the Court will accept a deferred plea in which a verdict will be set aside and the cases eventually expunged if Gifford avoids further legal trouble for a specified time.

> Aftermath: It has been a difficult month for Gifford, whose mother and best friend died within a week’s span. A memorial service for his mother is scheduled for Saturday. Gifford has managed to maintain good grades, Cunney said. Gifford played defensive end in 2015, making four starts in 12 games (he missed the finale because of an injury), but is projected to compete at defensive tackle in UH’s switch to a 4-3 base alignment. Last year, 18 percent of Gifford’s tackles were for losses or no gain. Opponents averaged 1.5 yards on defensive plays he made on third down.


  1. Bryson May 25, 2016 9:44 am

    It’s great to have Gifford back with everything that’s going on he needs to be around a great support system and I believe Rolo and the team are just what he needs to help support him through these tough times

  2. st. anthony trojan May 25, 2016 9:47 am

    Hope no more hum-bug with the warrior team till x-mas …

  3. Da Punchbowl Kid May 25, 2016 10:17 am

    Appropriate, measured response. Coach Rolo shows heart and wisdom in this instance.

    Very happy for Gifford – I see him coming back stronger than ever.

    Hope we see KT back on the field, older and wiser – and kickin’ butt!


  4. legistlature May 25, 2016 10:22 am

    To God be the glory for all the trials that Gifford has gone through.
    How great is our Lord! His power is absolute! His understanding is beyond comprehension.

  5. NorthShoreFan May 25, 2016 10:35 am

    Guud Morning Tsaikos…Bootiful Day!
    Great to hear that KG is being given a chance to get back on the path.
    inre. his leaving the scene…fender bender….discussion about damages…no agreement…leave the scene. Seems to me they must have exchanged information. So what more to do? me thinks, leave before get too frustrated trying to negotiate one deal….might escalate the event.

    ID theft is not good…to da false one…this is what you doing.

  6. Maddog50 May 25, 2016 11:27 am

    I feel for this young man. Losing your mother someone so close. I am not known for soft heart but for common sense. I really want him to succeed in school life and athletics. Best to him and powers that be to offer a chance. Here is to the other young man whose challenges I’m sure are just as great. Born and raised in Englewood Chicago-if you get no 2nd chance there are none after….Go Warriors!

  7. Stephen Tsai May 25, 2016 11:43 am

    North Shore
    I don’t know the exact particulars, but I do know that, like the rest of us, not involving insurance companies is a preferred option.

  8. H-Man May 25, 2016 12:24 pm

    Not involving insurance companies for small fender benders is the preferred option; however, you do take a chance the other party won’t come up with the money. It happened to me.

  9. legistlature May 25, 2016 12:40 pm

    Forgive and forget
    fender-bender ….mynah…no body injured, small kine scratch on da car….Just give em da eye den tell em… eh watch da road wen u driving…and get back in your before u late 4 work.

  10. kahuna May 25, 2016 1:20 pm

    Not to mention the possibility of some people to take advantage of a small fender bender and make the party pay for something he/she did not do.

    I had on situation in Kahala Mall where I was pulling out of the parking stall and NEARLY BUT DID NOT hit a car coming around the turn. An old man stormed out of the car and started to look around his car for possible damage(If I did hit him, I would have hit the driver side door. Dude was looking at his bumper, under his car and all over). The dude was looking in areas where there is NO WAY I could have hit. I knew that punk ass was looking to take advantage of me. I just left. If he called the cops, I could have proved I never hit him cause there was no damage to my back bumper. Hate people like that. Possible Gifford ran into some guy like that.

  11. H-Man May 25, 2016 1:36 pm

    Forgive and forget. No way. My little scratch cost $950 to repair. An that was the cheapest quote of three that I got. The highest was $1,700. The other was $1,200.

  12. Stephen Tsai May 25, 2016 1:50 pm

    Best thing to do is get out the cell phone and take pictures.

  13. Stephen Tsai May 25, 2016 1:52 pm

    It’s interesting how the repairs are the exact amount as the insurance payout.

  14. H-Man May 25, 2016 3:54 pm

    Change subject. I like that Rolo and staff are filling in some of the blanks with some awesome walk-ons. Really looking forward to see what they can do with a full recruiting cycle.

  15. long time lurker May 25, 2016 7:02 pm

    Any word on how the quarterback situation is shaping up?

  16. NorthShoreFan May 25, 2016 10:44 pm

    ST, no insurance company involvement is best but I also had the bad experience of “settling” with a driver whose front wheel cam off and wiped out my x-cab and truck bed. Officer mediated to try and settle. I told him my ins. co. needed a report. Guud thing I did have the report. I was supposed to get the deductible back from him but turns out, no insurance, skipped out his job, fake/altered driver’s license. When I asked PD they had no answers for me. Insurance company tried to recover but couldn’t find the guy after 2 years, they quit.
    And guess what?….repairs came out exactly as the estimate for repairs. Add this the wonders of the world…

  17. DaveLetterMan May 26, 2016 2:16 am

    A girl coming out of a driveway hits me. HPD called and I have a report. She was tagged for expired safety check and registration. I contacted her insurance and they set up an appointment for body shop (estimate is $1600) and have a rental car waiting for me when I have the work done. Problem is she hasn’t reported it to her insurance yet and they won’t ok repairs until she does. It’s been three months. Don’t want to pay to fix it since I was getting ready to trade or sell it soon. HPD can’t help.

  18. A-House May 26, 2016 5:58 am

    minor fender bender — best to call HPD and have a report filed

    human nature really sucks!!!

    repair estimate and insurance payout, in 99.9 % of the time, will be the same as insurance company required to pay once a shop is selected

    back in my day, unsure about now, but the body shop would buy a fender for 80-85% of the regular price, but add on 125% of the regular cost on the repair estimate – ie, fender cost $500 – shop pays $375 but charges $625 on the estimate — we would grumble like heck, but repair shops would not change.

  19. A-House May 26, 2016 5:59 am

    got an insurance problem? call the Insurance Commissioner’s Office and file a complaint!

  20. Del Rio Air Conditioning May 26, 2016 6:04 am

    So sad to hear about Gifford’s mother and friend! So terrible!

  21. Inyoface May 26, 2016 7:23 am

    Hope we start winning, it’s been a long 4 years.

  22. NorthShoreFan May 26, 2016 7:53 am

    Guud Morning Tsaikos…Bootiful Day!
    No worries, Coach Rolo get um going. Da boyz focused and ready for summer camp. gonna be hot and fierce. Want a job? Summer is when you earn it!

    Ins. Co?…we no can win. We pay fo odda guys pilikea. My fadda wen over 45 years befo one ticket..manini kine and they wen jack is ins. up. Big hurricane state side, no worries you pay for them.

    Anyhoo, just …IMUA WARRIORS!

  23. Shoko May 26, 2016 8:18 am

    Thirteen-page independent report about Baylor’s failure to appropriately address domestic violence and sexual assault committed by athletes and resulting in Briles’ suspension and inevitable dismissal. Looks like good bedtime reading!

  24. Ipu Man May 26, 2016 9:06 am

    Welcome back defensive end Ka‘aumoana Gifford.
    Sorry if it was H-Man you hit.

  25. Stephen Tsai May 26, 2016 9:41 am

    New post:

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