UH football: Depth reduction

Even before yesterday’s arrests of defensive tackles Kennedy Tulimasealii and Ka‘aumoana Gifford, there were concerns about the Warriors’ depth at the two interior line positions.

The switch to the four-man front had helped because hybrid edge defenders (Makani Kema-Kaleiwahea, Meffy Koloamatangi, David Manoa and Manly Williams) could play end.

But the Warriors are lacking big bodies for the inside. Samiuela Akoteu, who was cleared to work out after missing the 2015 season because of a foot injury, shifted from the nose tackle to the 3-technique during yesterday’s practice. The other two interior defensive linemen available for position drills — Zeno Choi and Remy McClam — are walk-ons. Defensive coordinator Kevin Lempa joked the Warriors might have to activate Isa‘ako “Isaac” Sopoaga, who attended yesterday’s practice.

A possible solution would be to move, at least temporarily, an offensive lineman to defense. Last year, Eperone Moananu made the mid-season to help the short-handed defense. If the depth problem is prolonged, the Warriors also could expand use of the 3-4, a scheme that already is part of their defensive strategy.


  1. cheepono April 13, 2016 8:21 am

    hope netane it’s training hard. he could be in for a lot of playing time as a true frosh.

  2. jeezy33 April 13, 2016 8:37 am

    Damn, our depth is paper thin. Viane Moala and Netane Muti will get serious run as true Fr. I really don’t think Gifford will miss time though. I don’t see any charges holding up against him. Kind of unfortunate situation for him as he was put in a really bad spot and he didn’t harm anybody. Context is important there. I expect KT career as a Warrior to be done. Just me opinions based on what is being reported on the news and newspapers.

  3. cappie the dog April 13, 2016 9:13 am

    to Down with(from previous post)-

    Did not mean for it to sound like an attack.

  4. NorthShoreFan April 13, 2016 9:30 am

    Guud Morning Tsaikos…Bootiful Day!
    After the great start, things have gone a little south with this situation. don’t have the whole story but actions need to be accounted for. a promising career may be on the brink. not sure if it’s salvageable. there will be a lot of time now to reflect on his actions. one needs to make things good in order to keep walking the path or take a different route. decision time kt.

  5. Inyoface April 13, 2016 9:35 am

    Next man up…

  6. DaPunchbowl Kid April 13, 2016 9:56 am

    Sad situation indeed. Need to have faith that something good will come of this. May the Lord be with you KT. Live learn and grow as we all do.

    Coach Rolo’s mettle is being tested early.


  7. DaPunchbowl Kid April 13, 2016 9:57 am

    #5 – Rajah dat!

  8. H-Man April 13, 2016 10:42 am

    I wonder what is going on with Kennedy. They showed clips of him on KITV last night; clips from last season and he looked like a D-lineman, size wise. He has lost so much weight that he looks like a linebacker now. Undergoing stress? Just hoping he can get past this and be able to continue his football career.

  9. Derek April 13, 2016 10:48 am

    Tough losses, but nobody is indespensable. I agree, Gifford should be back. Kennedy, don’t think so. There’s a lot of apologizing to do to his coaches, his teammates, the university at large, and the fans. Don’t know about his NFL now.
    As Rolo said, it’s a sad deal all around. Right now, next men up, there’s a job to be done in the interior line of our defense. There is strength through adversity. There is enough time to move people around to fill in the gaps. True freshmen and redshirt freshmen will probably be counted on more which is both good and bad, but it is what it is.

  10. kev-1 April 13, 2016 10:48 am

    So much we don’t know. So much at stake. Yes, we all make mistakes, especially that age. Still, we all need to live with the consequences of our mistakes. Life is full of mistakes, let’s not make it full of excuses too. If we could go back and change something or fix a mistake we have made in our lives, many of us would find ourselves back when we were Kennedy’s age (at least I know I would). The reality is, we can’t. We can just grow.

    I just hope that Coach Rolo gets a chance to speak to the two players and show them support through this hard time (and I am sure he will). Showing support does not excuse behavior.

  11. kev-1 April 13, 2016 10:49 am

    Next man up? That is the hope. I think the problem might be … no more next man up.

  12. mileHIwarrior April 13, 2016 10:53 am

    Wait…KT already had a court date for abuse of a family member? When did this come down? I must have missed it or was really kept under wraps? Auwe braddah boo!

  13. Old Diver April 13, 2016 11:06 am

    mileHIwarrior, I believe you have misread the article.

  14. legistlature April 13, 2016 12:57 pm

    When it’s all been said and done
    There is just one thing that matters
    Did I do my best to live for truth?
    Did I live my life for you?

    When it’s all been said and done
    All my treasures will mean nothing
    Only what I’ve done for love’s reward
    Will stand the test of time

    Lord, your mercy is so great
    That you look beyond our weakness
    And find purest gold in miry clay
    Turning sinners into saints.

    And I will always sing your praise
    Here on earth and ever after
    For you’ve shown me heavens, my true home
    When it’s all been said and done
    You’re my life when life is gone…

  15. Real Talk April 13, 2016 1:40 pm

    I have read on the blog and also on the main story. People are crying “what about innocent until proven guilty.”

    Well people, innocent people don’t fight back against cops. Innocent people don’t need pepper spray used against them.

    Now I cannot comment how the young lady got scratches. It could have been an accident. It could have been done with malice. It could have been in defense. So I will wait to gather facts from that part of the story.

    But to push/hit cops, get arrested, and hit with pepper spray? That is not how innocent people get treated.

    This guy is a bum. Kick him off the team and move one.

  16. ALLAN April 13, 2016 2:47 pm


  17. Bryan April 13, 2016 3:38 pm

    We’ve all used bad judgement. Gotta coach ‘um up in life!

  18. AllG April 13, 2016 4:41 pm

    Our thin depth goes back to one of the big failures in my opinion of Norm Chow. He did not bring in many DTs at most 1 per class. Was a position we were always thin at during his tenure, even starting DEs at the position for majority of the season. Was a position I was hoping Rolo would load up on and even bring in a JC guy, but looks like we are going to be a injury away from not being able to stop the run for another season.

  19. Ipu Man April 13, 2016 5:06 pm

    KT is probably out for good. But his buddy was handcuffed
    and arrested for just wanting to cover his naked friend with
    a blanket. What’s wrong with that…officer?

  20. uhfan April 13, 2016 5:26 pm

    Easy thing to do is abandon the kid when he is in need… Really not sure what truly happened but it does seem like he made a mistake, we all have made bad decisions. Plays or dismissed the “rest of his life” is way more important than football.

  21. SteveM April 13, 2016 6:35 pm

    Hoping for the best for Tulimasealii and Gifford.

    As I recall, KT was heavily recruited by other schools but kept his faith to Hawaii.
    Would he have the same problems in another culture and lifestyle far from Hawaii?
    I dunno, but I’ll keep my faith in him. I figure we owe him that much….

  22. A-House April 13, 2016 7:59 pm

    me likes St’s article the best because he seemed to not have all the information and spoke of generalities unlike others who pointedly said KT’s playing is done and no chance at the NFL – a certain sportsperson sounded like judge and jury with comments made on tv last evening

    wonder, really, how many truly knows all the facts of what happened and why – made me wonder if Hawaii’s police is like other cities on the mainland that made major news around the world – seems Gifford’s actions to clothe KT did not, IMHO, be worthy of obstruction and to be hand cuffed

    I do hope that the true story will be revealed some day.

    I for one, would not compare what certain NFL players did that warranted suspensions for assault and battery — assault can be verbal, but battery means physical contact

  23. Inyoface April 14, 2016 8:12 am

    We always said there was no depth on the defensive line for several years now it seems but I thought they did a great job at Ohio State and many other games. The only thing is the offense never scored and kept them on the field forever. The main thing is our offense moving the chains and getting in the endzone often.

  24. WWF April 14, 2016 8:15 am

    I had once assumed that the Duke Lacrosse team was guilty several years ago from media-biased reporting.

  25. 808warriorfan April 14, 2016 8:26 am

    #17 “IPU MAN” … WOW if all Ka’aumoana did was try to cover KT up w/ a blanket then HPD is really screwed up … arresting him for that … Hope the Judge throws the book at the cops for that …

  26. Govnation April 14, 2016 9:11 am

    Sad loss for the Warriors. Excited to see Manly Williams getting some PT with a little weight room work i can see him in the near future becoming a all Mountain West player moving to defensive end from ss/lb last year as a freshman.

  27. kev-1 April 14, 2016 9:42 am

    There is far too much speculating going on. People read comments on other blogs and then start passing it off as actual accounts of what happened.

  28. DaveLetterMan April 14, 2016 10:15 am

    Morning Tsaikos!
    Praying for both KT and KG. Agree with Kev-1. We don’t know what really happened so we shouldn’t pass judgement so quickly. We all make mistakes in life and I got second chances in my life. It’s how you bounce back from your mistakes. If the outcome is that they don’t play again for UH, we should still support them in whatever they do in life. For life is way more important than football.

  29. Legistlature April 14, 2016 10:22 am

    No.15-spoken like one of Hawaii’s Finest, so they call themselves.

  30. Stephen Tsai April 14, 2016 11:35 am

    New post: http://hawaiiwarriorworld.com/?p=36916

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