Robbs: Ironman was Gridiron Man

In a game of word association, if you say, “Don Robbs,” the response usually is “Rainbow baseball.”

But for several years, Robbs was involved in UH football broadcasts. As host of the pre-game show, he would do features that set the scene for the upcoming game and also nostalgia pieces that brought perspective.

But while recognized for his deep, rich voice — dating to the daytime “Don Robbs Show” — his work on football broadcasts was largely away from the mic, particularly for road games. He was the station’s general manager who did the roadie work. He set up equipment, assured the lines and, even, organized the logs, which is the equivalent of a broadcast’s script. In industry parlance, he was the show runner. With Robbs at the controls, often literally, the on-air broadcasters did not have to worry about the technical details, instead focusing on calling and analyzing games.

Media folks like to hang out together on the eve of road games. Robbs served as our refreshment coordinator. After all, he was able to locate micro-breweries in Salt Lake City.

His involvement in football broadcasts ended several years ago. But his contributions remain memorable.


  1. bg May 29, 2016 10:29 am

    Top of the morning everyone!

    Well said ST. Don Robbs has an unsurpassed legacy and, like the Leahys, has someone to carry on the superb contributions to the Hawaii sports scene.

    Job very, very well done, Don!

  2. bg May 29, 2016 10:31 am

    Dang! I gots me a Tsaiko avatar! NSF and SteveM, thanks guys!!! 😉

  3. H-Man May 29, 2016 11:00 am

    I don’t know Don Robbs personally, but from what I have read, he sounds like a very humble person and overall really nice guy. Don, enjoy your retirement !!!

  4. H-Man May 29, 2016 11:02 am

    Ref previous thread, A-House , I would guess there’s about a 20% overlap in the names on the two lists (combined current total of 234 names). These are supposed to be players that have received offers from Hawaii, along with other universities. I suppose both Scout and Yahoo get their information from players making declarations on twitter. Not exactly an exact science, but tracking does keep me interested. The positions the coaching staff appear to have placed emphasis are CB, OT and DE.

  5. Da Punchbowl Kid May 29, 2016 11:05 am

    Mahalo Don!

  6. A-House May 29, 2016 1:28 pm


    coaching recruiting emphasis — what’s wrong with the coach to publicly state, in writing, where the emphasis ranking them 1 or 2 or 3 or 4, etc. — are they afraid of what others will say? who cares what others say! only thing that counts is the HC position.

    I see sports analysis post their opinion on what the “team needs are” — yes, it’s their opinion, not the coach or coaching staff – like, Kiper, or Curtis

    we, the public, can rantor [ is there such a word? ] all we like, but it should not matter to the coach — it’s his team!!!

    if the public questions a coach, let the coach respond with his/her explanation — and if this doesn’t satisfy some – then tough tittie!

  7. Kapahulu May 29, 2016 1:55 pm

    Congratulations and Mahalo to Don Robbs on a great career.
    Someone compared Don as Hawaii’s Vin Scully.
    Great comparison.
    Good article about Don in today’s newspaper. Much more than Baseball.
    We were very fortunate to have Don’s contributions in Hawaii in many ways.
    So happy UH recently inducted Don in the UH Circle of Honor.
    Go Bows!

  8. SteveM May 29, 2016 2:19 pm

    Aloha and Mahalo to Don Robbs!

  9. burro sabio May 29, 2016 3:49 pm

    Mr. A-House, did you ever watch “We Are Marshall”? Recruiting for the upcoming season is probably organized in a similar manner today but using modern technology to track prospects and commitments.

  10. turfwar May 29, 2016 4:37 pm two prospects and Naeole as a recruiter is pretty intriguing. We shall see but will be fun to follow with Tuioti giving his all for Michigan too.

  11. turfwar May 29, 2016 4:41 pm Try this. Intriguing story with intriguing prospects. Naeole battling Tuioti among others for these two guys and maybe a couple others not mentioned.

  12. cappie the dog May 29, 2016 7:16 pm

    I vaguely recall a movie-of-the-week sponsored by Matson. There was a host. Was that Don Robbs?

    Anybody remember “Black Belt Theater”. I recently purchased “Lady Snowblood” on Criterion, thinking I never saw this film before. But no, I watched it on KIKU as a child. Crtierion is also releasing a kung fu film called “A Touch of Zen”. This is the influence of Quentin Tarrantino, reclassifying B-movies as art films.

    Today’s loss, 5-3, amazingly is the same score in which Hawaii lost to Arizona in the College World Series final.

    It was great to see Josh Pigg have a successful outing on Friday. I saw Trapasso put his arm around Josh as he entered the dugout.

    I predict he will be drafted, like Alex Capaul; bad numbers, but so much upside.
    I think Pigg is the most talented player on the team.

    I will miss you Don Robbs tremendously. I remember returning from an Amway meeting when Hawaii was in the regional final against Pepperdine, and screaming, “Matt Apana!!!” when Robbs announced the starter. I thought Coach Murakami was going to staff the game. Start Craig Tucker and see how long he would last. What a tough position Coach Les put Apana in, who barely saw any action as a freshman.

    Aloha, Don Robbs. I really started to appreciate you after listening to the various webcasts across the WAC, Mountain West and Big West spectrum. You are a hidden treasure in the broadcasting world.

  13. Rodney May 29, 2016 7:22 pm

    We need a new baseball coach and somone to replace Don Robbs.
    I say lets have Trap replace Robs on radio.
    Let’s start a search a national
    search for young asst to be our new head coach.

  14. Akamai Okole May 29, 2016 10:35 pm

    Great Evening All!

    Mahalo Don Robbs!

    Mahalo BaseBows!

  15. NorthShoreFan May 30, 2016 6:50 am

    Guud Morning Tsaikos…Bootiful Day!

    Many Thanks to our country’s finest who have made the ultimate sacrifice.

    Enjoy the day but remember….

  16. NorthShoreFan May 30, 2016 6:55 am

    Shirt order pretty much 18 orders so far.
    Akamai Okole
    Annoddah Dave
    A-House ohana

  17. NorthShoreFan May 30, 2016 6:59 am

    Mililani’s own…

  18. H-Man May 30, 2016 7:23 am

    Watching “Brothers in War” on National Geographic Channel about Charlie Company in Viet Nam. Big battle against a Vietnamese army battalion (about 500 troops). Charlie Company over matched with only 120 men and they take heavy machine gun fire. Their sister company, A Company gets caught in the machine gun crossfire and take significant casualty. The LA Times report the US Army takes a significant loss in a battle in Viet Nam, never mentioning that Charlie Company took the offensive, killing 250 of the enemy and the remainder of that battalion retreated in the night.

  19. DaveLetterMan May 30, 2016 7:30 am

    Morning Tsaikos!
    NSF, no foget me.

  20. DaveLetterMan May 30, 2016 7:31 am

    You can put me down for two:
    1 L
    1 XXL

  21. NorthShoreFan May 30, 2016 7:34 am


  22. NorthShoreFan May 30, 2016 7:36 am

    @ 20 and counting…
    A-Joe…where you going with that file in your hand?….

  23. Ipu Man May 30, 2016 7:53 am

    I like Don Robbs rich mellow voice.
    He should do commercials for extra moolah methinks.

  24. Old School Dave May 30, 2016 8:30 am

    Mahalo to Don Robbs. He’s been a fixture on local TV for many years. Please enjoy your retirement.

    Anyone remember Jim Andersen from the old “Sumo Digest” on Channel 13, locally? I remember watching Chiyonofuji, Kitanoumi, among other greats on that show. Think that Konishiki was just coming up the ranks when the local program ended.

  25. A-House May 30, 2016 8:51 am


    what happens if your final count exceeds 20?

    will Na Koa allow us to split the $1,000 amongst the 30?

    Na Koa brochure went by $1,000 levels

  26. A-House May 30, 2016 8:54 am

    On this Memorial Day, I pay special tribute to my March 1966 OCS classmates who lost their lives in Viet Nam — most died within 6 months of arriving in country.

    Not to forget all others who gave their lives in defense of our country and way of life protecting our Constitution and Bill of Rights.

  27. A-House May 30, 2016 9:10 am

    although I was poor to mediocre in the English language, I still think of the words that make up our Constitution and Bill of Rights and what is written is not what “man” decided what it means.

    for example, the words are “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” — liberty for whom? certainly, not all Americans were afforded this “right” to pursue happiness.

    both documents help shape our daily lives and affects every man, women, and child – why is the phrase “American Indian” used to describe those who were the “original” inhabitants of our country? or, Asian American or Hispanic or African American – yet, no “white American” is termed English American or French American or German American, etc. – this group is called American — WHY???????

    yes, this is a sports blog, but the above affects the very fabric of America whether you like it or not! I, for one, will not bury my head in the sand.

    GO BOWS!!!!!!!!!!

  28. A-House May 30, 2016 9:30 am


    read the article with amazement!

    so young — so LARGE — so talented.

    how are their academics? certainly a select few Power5 schools will admit them whereas UH will not which leads to the question of “why is not the same minimum standard mandatory for all schools? I know “college algebra” is required for UH, but not all schools.

    does college algebra make UH a better academic school? Is passing “speech” still a mandatory class for graduation?

    I grew up as a “pine apple” country bumkin and my pidgen was so bad that I had to repeat speech class until I had a haole professor who started the instruction by stating if there were enough peoplein Hawaii pidgen English could be classified as a special dialect of standard English such as the deep South, the Bronx, or New England — get one from each section and they would not be able to understand what the others were saying, yet it would be music to a pidgen English speaking/understanding person

    Athletic Department crucial benchmark is GPA as deemed crucial by the NCAA, yet the NCAA turns it cheek on the North Carolina academic scandal saying it does not control “false classes” for 20 + years which most, if not all, selected students were given academic credit and UH gets slapped with loss of scholarship(s) for being below the minimum point level set by the NCAA.

    Yep, like the Bill of Rights, not all is equal in America!

  29. Stephen Tsai May 30, 2016 9:37 am

    New post:

Comments are closed.