KITV sports anchor Robert Kekaula’s once-upon-a-time dreams have been realized.
“These are exciting times,” said Kekaula, 46, who accepted an offer from Oceanic to serve as play-by-play announcer for Warrior football telecasts. “UH football is the biggest game in town. This is something I’ve always had a desire to do.”
Kekaula was a television and radio color analyst for 18 UH football seasons before receiving a call from Dan Schmidt, Oceanic’s general manager and executive producer for UH sportscasts.
Oceanic is taking over the production of UH sportscasts from KFVE. Jim Leahey had served as KFVE’s primary play-by-play announcer for a quarter century.
“I knew Dan when I was working at KHNL,” Kekaula said during an interview with the WB last night at KITV. “We had a great working relationship. When he got on board at Oceanic, he gave me a call and asked me if I would be interested (in becoming play-by-play announcer). I said: ‘If you’re running things, I’m very interested.’ He’s a go-getter. He’s a doer. I like to think I drink from the same cup.”
Kekaula added: “I’ve learned a lot from Bobby Curran. We worked together for 13 years. I learned a lot from Bob Hogue. I learned a lot from Don Robbs. He first hired me. I owe a lot to Howard Dashefsky, Larry Beil and Matt Pinto. But I do what I do today for a living because I watched Jim Leahey growing up. I’m fortunate to call him a friend and a mentor my entire adult life.”
Kekaula will use vacation time to work the games.
“I’m sure it won’t be easy but my general manager (KITV’s Andrew Jackson) and news director (Genie Garner) are gracious enough to let me try this,” Kekaula said.
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Mike Edwards has arrived . . .
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Forty-six more days . . .