McMackin on empty seats: “I’m not going to make any pleas.”

November 28th, 2011

University of Hawaii football coach Greg McMackin was asked at his Saturday postgame press conference about the empty seats in the student section at Aloha Stadium as UH looks ahead to hosting BYU this Saturday. Here’s what he had to say.

“I’m not going to make any pleas (to the students to fill the empty section). Shoot, it’s going to be a great ball game. If people want to come and watch, then that’s great. I know this, I’ve been around Hawaii for quite a while now and I know that if it rains, they don’t want to come to the ball game. I don’t care if you’re playing (USC) or you’re playing whoever, we people, including myself, in Hawaii are spoiled when it rains. I hope it doesn’t rain.”

80 Responses to “McMackin on empty seats: “I’m not going to make any pleas.””

  1. kev-1:

    Just when I was backing off of the fire Mack train he says something like that. Is it not his responsibility to try and put fans in the stands as head coach of the team? He needs to care about these things instead of brushing the fans off like they don’t matter.

    Reading into it a little, is he not calling Hawaii fans “spoiled?” As nonchalant and sometimes unaffected as JJ seemed, he always made comments about trying to get fans into the stadium. What is this guys deal?

    And yes, I get the fact that winning puts fans in the stands, but when you’re not winning, you still need to let the fan base know they are valued. Not basically say “I aint begging fans to come. If they come, they come.”

  2. kev-1:

    I’m sorry sir, you get paid over $1 million to be coach of this team and spokesperson for the football program MAKE A PLEA TO GET YOUR FANS IN THE STANDS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. bryson:

    Your reading into it too much if you look at that quote he includes himself…

  4. kev-1:

    Does that make a difference? You don’t think he has a responsibility to at least try and put fans in the stands? It is also a bit naive of him to think that fans aren’t showing up simply because of the rain. I don’t believe he truly believes that himself either.

  5. kev-1:

    But yeah, I intentionally read into it. If I say, “all the employees where I work are lazy, including myself” did I still not call all the employees lazy?

  6. greg:

    What he is saying is Hawaii fans are lame, the truth hurts.

  7. setaone:

    He is delusional. It doesn’t matter WHO Hawaii is playing, its HOW Hawaii is playing. Come on Mack, don’t try to deny the fact that your team has been underperforming and people have been jumping off the bandwagon all season. Much props to those that show up and stay, even in the rain. OR, how about he be like Dave Shoji and give tickets away to students (or are student tickets free already? Then that is a different story).

  8. Robin:

    @setaone: NCAA tournament tickets are $5 for UH students.

  9. Robin:

    @Greg: Hawaii fans and people probably have better perspective on sports and football than the rest of the nation. Most pro and college football players and coaches are not worthy of the adulation they receive.

  10. greg:

    @Robin: Maybe so, but they still lame as far as support

  11. setaone:

    @Robin-sorry. Meant to say “Are student football tickets free?” If so, then them not showing up is a whole nother story.

  12. Robin:

    @setone: yes, nonbowl UH student football tickets are free.

    @Greg- So would you say a) other WAC teams with much lower attendance on average is even LAMER also. or b) is their support (or lack of) a reflection of a “mid-major product”?

    I’ve heard both sides of criticism on UH football fans:
    1) You guys are fair weather fans, not rabid enough, etc.
    2) You guys get all ‘patriotic’ about your team and the UH and the WAC are a joke, not big time, etc.

    So they can’t win… it’s you guys aren’t real fans, or you guys are fans of this lame level (condescending) of college football?

  13. setaone:

    @robin – thanks for clearing that up.

    Mack needs to be encouraging people to show up, not making excuses for them not showing up. Its BYU, it should sell on its own. And it’s senior night as well.

  14. Aloha Friday:

    I think the real point of this discussion is that if the Warriors won just one of the three games that they were suppose to win (UNLV, Utah State, San Jose State), we would probably not be talking about rain and attendance. The Hawaii Bowl would be locked in and although it may not have been a stellar season, the fans would show for the last game of the season, especially for a BYU rivalry game.

  15. Lonomoku:

    Coach Mack has thanked the fans on many, many occasions for “being there”. That’s on record in the newspaper and TV sports. I don’t blame him for not “pleading” with the so-called fans(?) in Hawaii. There are about 20,000 hard core. The rest would rather watch on PPV (rain or shine) in the comfort of their homes, or a friend’s or a sports bar. Those “fans” don’t care about the team. Or they’d have their butts in the seats at Aloha Stadium. It’s sickening how everyone wants to pile on — the coach, OC, DC, AD — that’ the focus. In real programs (even the ones that are hard on coaches)fans care about the team and show up for the games. Hawaii fans just need an excuse when things are going wrong. Like the bonehead who sent the point shaving letter. Thanks a lot. It will take how long for us to recover (recruiting) so whoever you are could get back at someone. If you really had something, you would have included something concrete in the letter. But that’s one person. One stupid act. Hawaii fans don’t understand what a first class program is all about. It starts with supporting the players even if you don’t like the coach — like many of us who went to every game when JJ was here lecturing us on marketing, logos and sports agents. Look in the mirror Hawaii fans. What’s wrong with UH football may start with many of you.

  16. torps20022:

    Lonomoku I totally agree with you. I could not say it any better, except for a bunch of winers that rather stay home anyway. I want to see them get out there on the field and get their legs knocked from under them then get back up in the huddle. I am really tired of these none supporters band wagon people.

  17. kev-1:

    15 & 16 . . . you say that “band wagon” fans are the problem? Fans like you are just as much part of the problem too. Very arrogant perspectives from people who just assume that those who comment about attendance don’t go to the games.

    If you go to a restaurant and the food sucks, are you going back? Maybe once or twice, but if the food stil sucks, you’ll stop going. It is rather ignorant to think the football market is any different. You are correct that there are the hard core fans that show up regardless. And those should be commended. But to dismiss the fans that go because they enjoy a good game or a good product is ridiculous.

    It’s a good think you two don’t work for UHs athletic marketing department. Wait a minute . . . or do you?

  18. kev-1:

    good thing, not think . . . oops

  19. Dave Reardon:

    As an aside, Dave Shoji bought 100 tickets for students for the NCAA first round. Not saying that correlates directly to this. Just saying it’s interesting and says a lot about Shoji.

  20. kev-1:

    Would Shoji’s ticket purchases be considered a “plea” to fans? Come on, we should be above making pleas to our fans.

  21. Innocent Observer:

    coach mack has lost it, time to go. his attitude is “ainokea” since he knows that he will be fired after the season. bye mack, hope you have a better career with JJ at smu.

  22. Aloha Friday:

    After the 2007 season, Warrior football is be held to a higher standard. Fans expect a winning season every year. No exceptions. Coach Mack started the “band wagon” by promising that we would be bowling every season.
    Don’t hate on the fans when the coach has not delivered on his promises.

    Do you think Norm Chow is still interested in the HC gig?

  23. Aloha Friday:

    19. All seriousness aside, Coach Mack can 1 up Shoji by allowing the swapmeet to be held in the stands during the game to fill up all the empty seats.

    Imagine watching the warriors and buying 10 TShirts for 20 bucks all in the same venue…Awesome!!!

  24. Lonomoku:

    Dave — is this blog about comparing 2 coaches? Is that what you’re writing about? You’re wasting all your journalism credentials and smarts on another attempt to criticize a coach’s communication skills. You’re too good to do this. What gives? Can’t we get something a little more insightful from you the Monday after a football game.

    And #17. I don’t work at UH. I don’t have a relative on the football team. I’m a shameless homer. I’m not better than you. I’m emotionally invested. You admittedly want to be entertained at a football game and you think the show is really bad. What I can’t figure out is why you care so much about what homers like me say and think. You’re there for the stimulation. It’s great when we’re winning big and that place is packed. You and I could be sitting right next to each other and get along just fine. But right now, people who really don’t care seem to have an awful lot to say. So UH football games are just a sporting event to you. Maybe you’ve never
    had a strong team loyalty. That’s fine. Just don’t get defensive. You’re the one who said if the food “sucks” why go back?
    And you call me arrogant?

  25. Dave Reardon:

    24. Just providing the facts. You guys discuss. Yeah, you’re right, I’m wrong … Coach McMackin is The Great Communicator.

  26. Dave Reardon:

    It’s just that to me it is interesting that the coach who isn’t making $1.1 million a year is the one who buys tickets for the students. If pointing that out risks my journalistic credentials, so be it. My job now is to have opinions and generate discussion. If I were still the UH football beat writer, my approach would be different.

  27. Dave Reardon:

    And, I should add, I do know Coach McMackin has done some nice things with some of his money, such as donating some to help the band with its expenses for a road trip. So consider that acknowledged. But this statement after Saturday’s game is just the latest of many times he has put his foot in his mouth.

  28. Kevin:

    November 28th, 2011 at 1:34 pm
    @Greg: Hawaii fans and people probably have better perspective on sports and football than the rest of the nation. Most pro and college football players and coaches are not worthy of the adulation they receive.

    McMackin has LOST IT. He knows he’s screwed.

    AND might I add, while I have lost confidence in our head coach, the STUDENT-ATLETES are the ones I still respect. As a collective group across the board extending beyond the football program there are good kids that bust their okoles in the classroom and on the field for next to nothing.

    Pro-athletes are the ones that sometimes do NOT deserve the adulation they get. Whiney little spoiled un-educated muscle-heads holding out millions on millions because their current millions aren;t enough to support their countless kids and uncontrollable spending habits…


  29. torps20022:

    hey kev so what you saying? team sucks…fans like you suck……you want a big time team, get out there and support them. I have been going for over 30 years to the games, even at the old stadium when larry price was coach. people like you only come and take up tailgate parking when we are 12-0. stay home, we don’t need you.

  30. Kevin:

    Dave Reardon:

    November 28th, 2011 at 6:12 pm
    And, I should add, I do know Coach McMackin has done some nice things with some of his money, such as donating some to help the band with its expenses for a road trip. So consider that acknowledged. But this statement after Saturday’s game is just the latest of many times he has put his foot in his mouth.


    Time administration puts their foot up his ***.

  31. Dave Reardon:

    22. I don’t know about Norm Chow’s interest. He may be happy as OC at his alma mater. I also don’t know if UH can afford him.

  32. Kevin:

    November 28th, 2011 at 12:44 pm
    Just when I was backing off..

    You crazy??? Win out and I still want HIM out.

    Brah, you know what lags with him and there were too many straws that broke the backs of SEVERAL camels this season.

    Don’t back off.. DON’T GET SOFT MAN!!!!!!!!

  33. wowlaulau:

    Guys it is just stirring the pot … in my opinion tabloid

  34. Dan-O:

    Dave….realistically…..does UH have an additional $1.1 million to payoff Mack AND have the additional $500-650,000 for the next head coach?

    Pickings will be slim for a coach in that pay range. All those wishing for the big name coaches can keep wishing….they not coming.

    Either way, an announcement in December to fire Mack kills recruiting for this year…..unless they hire from within the current staff, which I don’t think will please people. We all know how long it takes the state to hire somebody. Might be after LOI day before the new coach is hired.

  35. Kevin:

    You know this reminds me of Bob Nash’s situation towards the end of his coaching career at UH, but in a VERY opposite way.

    People can trash Bob Nash all they want to this day for his shortcomings as a head coach, BUT the man was ALL CLASS and anyone that respected him hurt a little when he got let go, but at the same time ACCEPTED the fact that he was not the one for the job and in that Bob Nash SHOULD be remembered as a class guy, didn’t get the job done, but was a class human being all the way to the very end.

    WHEN Mack is out off here, I can see him trashing UH at any chance he gets. Might even write a book… My God. Can you imagine trying to read that?

  36. Eradication:

    Mr. Reardon,

    I just finished reading your article and some of the comments you yourself posted and have decided that I will no longer read anything you write. Your credibility as an objective journalist, in my eyes, is nil. I realize that you have been a journalist for many years and have many credentials to your name but your comments alluding to the firing of the head football coach is paramount to journalistic sensationalism with little or no substance. Your pitting Coach Shoji and Coach McMackin just to create dissent is childish. I’ve admired your writings in the past, even those that I’ve disagreed with, but this article goes beyond disagreement. You have every right to write whatever your employer allows you to write and losing one unimportant reader obviously is not significant to you but I just thought I would share this with you.

  37. cocobean:

    Dave, I see you’re still angry about the Reno run in.

    From what I’ve read and heard on call ins there’s a lot more people that want Mack out than there’s people who want him to stay. Those people who take the time to express their view tend to have the program’s best interest at heart.

    Those that want him out are frustrated, angry and embarassed by the teams performance. They feel a change can only help. Those that support him are frustrated and angry by all the negativity directed at the coach and his staff. They feel all this negativity is influencing the non season ticket holder/PPV subscriber in his decision to buy a ticket or not.

  38. greg:

    @lonomoku : agree, well said just confirms my feelings about hawaii fans.

  39. johnC:

    Lonomoku (15 & 24) hit the nail on the head. One of the reasons I didn’t read the Star-Bulletin when the Advertiser was still around was the negativity that pervaded the Bulletin’s sports page. Journalists and bloggers should stir up discussion by pointing out facts, as Dave says and as he does, but he seems to have gotten into another mood where he chews mostly on negative facts. It’s difficult to tell where his reporting leaves off and his editorializing begins, i.e., the objective side versus the personal.

    (Gee, I hope the Advertiser didn’t fail because it wasn’t negative enough!)

    One of the great debates in journalism today is whether bloggers are journalists deserving of a journalist’s rights and priviliges. Dave’s comment appears to recognize a difference and that he has slightly different obligations in the different forums, the blog allowing for more opinion.. I certainly don’t know the answer to the general debate or to Dave’s case.(columnest, reporter and blogger), but his focus on negatively charged facts still leaaves a bad taste in my mouth.

    For example, Mack’s decision not to beg students to come to the games does not seem to me nearly as toxic or foot-in-mouth as Dave said. We all would love to see thousands of students, but they are adults with priorities we know nothing about. Who is Mack, who are we, to question what they do with their time? Yes, Mack was pretty lame to blame low attendance on rain, but it’s not a major sin, even taken with his other verbal gaffs.

    I wish us all the best. The team, coach Mac, Dave, me, all participants in this blog, should resolve to take this difficult year as a learning experience. The program needs more success on the field, so let’s support it. Meanwhile, UH showed integrity in reporting the anonymous letter to the authorities, Mack showed humanity with the lei to the referee, personal foul penalties are down, no substantial scandal has come to light (no Penn State, Ohio State, Boise State, Oregon, Syracuse), so it’s a hard year but not (that we know of) a disaster. E imua kakou.

  40. HiHawaii808:

    Mack’s job is to produce a football program that is in the public’s best interest since it is a state taxpayer funded program (University of Hawaii). He is a state worker representing the public just as a public school teacher is. Does he understand this? What is happening now is that the public is obligated to pay for the football program, including its head coach, but it doesn’t choose to support it otherwise by attending games for example. Similarly, the head coach doesn’t seem to represent the public even though they are paying for his salary and football program. What a waste of money! Let’s get a new head coach that can represent the public and that the public will support, or let’s just kill the football program!

  41. kev-1:

    #24 . . . Arrogance? Yes. Read your own writing. Not once did I write “I” in regards to fans who only support a winning program, yet that is what you read. It is pure dismissal of another perspective on your part. So yes, it is arrogance.

    And no sir or maam, it is you who is getting defensive.

  42. kev-1:

    Why do I go back if the food sucks? It doesn’t always suck. Maybe if they get a new chef in the kitchen it will taste better. And because it is a restaurant in a town I grew up in, and I will eat there for the rest of my life. MY POINT was that you cannot simply dismiss those who prefer not to. You still need to get try and get them in the stands.

  43. Oldtimer808:

    When we win we have the greatest coach when we lose he is the worst. This prevailing attitude is applied to every coach past and present. You know even when the team is winning and not just in football, it seems that there are always those individuals because of their dislike of a particular coach will continue to express their negative beliefs. So poor Coach Mack is now the subject of all this negativity. Hmmmm…I suppose not getting academics in better shape is not a real priority. It seems to me that is what collegiate athletics is all about is to give young men and women the chance to go to college and get a degree. We need coaches that realize how important that is for these young student/athletes. I recall June Jones after having a losing season that all the haters came out for his head. Coach Wagner suffered the same fate after taking Hawaii to the Holiday Bowl. The fans complained that the offense was boring and we needed more passing. Now we have more passing and backseat coaches are coming out of the wood work to write on How to Coach. We have outstanding coaches from football, to baseball, to volleyball, softball, basketball and we need to support all of them and our student/athletes. It is disturbing to read immature comments that our team sucks…hey support the team these young men work hard to get on the field and represent our state. Ok I am tired of all this so I will retire and maybe not read any more of this garbage on these blogs.

  44. shoichi84:

    “I know that it was really exciting to have the students there…early in the season it was great. Quite honestly, I was wondering what had happened.”

    He went on to say

    “I’d love to have the students there. I mean, the students area big part of it and the players like to play for the students.”

    Mr. Reardon, it is now painfully obvious you have the agenda of rallying support to oust Coach Mac, and at this point in time I absolutely cannot support that.

  45. krump1_AKA_protector:


    Your lack of professionalism seems to have no end. You actually use your column to slam Coach Mack because of a grudge you hold against him; it’s pathetic. You’re no better than the haters and trolls that abound on these blogs. I once held you in as high esteem as I do Stephen Tsai. He continues to shine as you sink in that muck of hatred. Whatever YOU’RE making, you are vastly overpaid and it’s Tsai who should be writing a column instead of you.

  46. kev-1:

    I can’t help but laugh my a___ off everytime someone comes on here to condemn criticism and say how bad the people who do it are, and at the same time call people names like “trolls.”

    The defensiveness from some people is absolutely ridiculous. It reminds me of the guy on the playground who confronts you saying “eh brah, no talk about my friend like dat!”

    Why is it so difficult to accept the fact that people are allowed to have different opinions. Surfacing a comment that highlights the lack of public/social sensitivity and consideration that the coach often displays is not “hating” nor is it part of an overt agenda to replace the coach.

    If a journalist writes something that you disagree with, then fine. But it is completely inappropriate and uncalled for the attack someones craft or profession just because you disagree. Some people express their opposing opinions with class and take part in rather fun debates. Others would rather name call and make personal attacks. The funny part is that the ones that do the latter are the very ones to claim to be taking “the high road.”

    Keep doing what you do Dave. You’re good at it, but you definitely don’t need me to say so. And so is Tsai, just to be fair.

  47. SackMack:

    Can/t blame the fans for not showing up this season. Mack is clueless and needs to be fired right after the BYU massacre! JD needs to give this clown the pink slip as he leaves Aloha Stadium. At any other school, losing to UNLV, San Jose St., Utah St., and barely surviving Idaho, would call for the fat lady to sing…Turn Out the Lights!

    I surely aren’t renewing my 4 season tickets with this coach hanging around next year! There’s at least another 12 in our group who ain’t renewing. Huge loss as the tickets come with the huge premium surcharge plus parking! Why contribute to a crappy program? It only gets worse before the tide turns!

  48. hosssana:

    Bust of the Year: Hawaii (33). When you have a losing record in the WAC, have lost three of your past four and are the subject of point-shaving rumors that hit the papers, you’ve had a bad season.

    Case Closed! and Mack can’t see why fans are not in the stands. The above is the NATIONAL PERCEPTION OF WHAT A BUST THE HAWAII TEAM WAS IN THE WORSE CONFERENCE IN DIV. 1…I repeat, WAC IS THE WORSE CONFERENCE…not my opinion but national perception and opinion.

  49. Lonomoku:

    To :48 — The Hawaii “fans” didn’t really show up in 2007 — the undefeated year. Remember? Check the low 30,000 and high 20,000 attendance records for that year under JJ. We have “fickle” fans and a university that’s addicted to PPV revenue.

    As for Bust of the Year. Yup. Just when you think it can’t get worse it does. The point shaving accusations are a cheap shot. Any hater could have written that letter. A credible source would have included enough to prompt an investigation of some kind. And despite all that’s gone wrong — before the injuries to key players starting piling up — this team travelled how many thousands of miles and beat the eventual WAC champion, La Tech. You can hate Mack for whatever reason. But coaching and communication skills didn’t do us in this year. The run and shoot needs a solid O line and healthy, experienced receivers. We didn’t have the experience in either area BEFORE the injuries. So the answer is fire the coach? Maybe. But the players who were out there giving it everything they have deserve better than being called a “bust of the year” by some “journalist” who’s paid for sarcasm — sort of like Dave’s comments about being paid to “stir” it up. It’s so easy to sit here and tap the keys. How many of us have ever played a down of D1 football — or coached at a competitive level.

  50. what's wrong?:

    what’s wrong?

    why do some of you blast reardon?
    all he did was publish the exact words that mack spilled from his mouth.

    reardon didn’t make those ill advised comments, the coach did.

  51. hosssana:

    to: 49..I have never advocated terminating Mac as the football coach. I do believe his contract should be extended and his pay should hover around the 400,000-450,000 mark with incentives e.g. winning conference or going bowling or winning BCS games on national T.V. etc…bonuses for those rewards but contract should be extended asap so the coaches can get on with the recruiting…I remember that last yr. we were co-champions and that has to be taken into consideration so continuity should be a hallmark for any football program unlike AKRON or MEMPHIS or KANSAS who fired their coaches after only two yrs. this yr. No, I do believe we should extend Mac’s contract with incentives etc…but he needs to bring in quality athletes that unfortunately, as hard as they may be playing, we just don’t have them on the team. We do have the worse group of receivers or inconsistent receivers in the past six yrs. and the offensive lineman leaves much to be desired. The coaches have to remember that Hawaii speed is not mainland speed and our linebackers and defensive linemen definitely lack speed……but I do believe the program can turn itself around but the contract has to be extended NOW and not have the UH admin. prolong or drawn out the process where it will hurt recruiting. Oh, well…let’s hope for the best this Sat.

  52. SacMacNWac:

    Dave speaks his peace of mind and doesn’t sugar coat his comments like the other blog master on the Star Advertiser. Have to admit that Dave has hit the nail right on it’s head. Attendance is a big factor for UH athletics and Mack has been unable to fill the seats at Aloha Stadium. Mack can concoct whatever excuse he wants but in the end winning is all that matters. Win and you save your job! Unfortunately all 4 wheels have come off on the UH bandwagon!

  53. Kaimuki_Kid:

    Strong trade winds projected for Saturday afternoon. Hope the wind blows Mac away once and for all. See ya coach!

  54. Aloha Friday:

    51. Great assessment on the team and what is needed to get things on the right path. Lack of speed on the defense has always been the Warriors problem since the JJ days. My major disappointment with Coach Mack is that I expected a bigger emphasis on defense, since that is his pedigree. I expected better recruiting for defensive talent and a more lock down, shutdown type of scheme which was his hallmark during his Miami U days.
    Your idea to extend and pay Coach Mack a lower base with incentive is a great idea. I think it would make him more hands on with the defense. I think Aranda is a good coach but he is still learning and does not have enough experience to get the defense to where it should be. I believe Mack should take over on defense next year, keep Aranda as a co-def coordinator and mentor him for at least a couple more years until he is ready. I also think it would be a good idea to have the recievers and running backs play two ways to help with the speed and coverage issues on defense. I know that it is probably a hard sell to get skilled speed plays to play defense in Hawaii but we seem to have a good turnout for players for our “R&S” offense. Utilize the speed that exist within the team. The Patriots do it with much success. Hawaii should too.

    Miano should get the whole team in participate in his speed and skills camp during the off season.

  55. Dave Reardon:

    49. You can say pretty much whatever you want about me and what you think about the way I go about my job. That’s fine. There are some misperceptions about that I might or might not address later.

    But you miss the biggest point in all of this, and it has nothing to do whether any of us played Division I football or even whether we even follow UH football or not. We, meaning the taxpayers of this state, foot the bill for Coach McMackin’s salary … and he is the highest paid public employee in the state. That means we have a right to expect a lot from him, on the field and off, as he represents the state. As Jim Donovan has said many times, we are all stakeholders in UH sports (whether we want to be or not). And we are all stakeholders when we pay someone $1.1 million a year and people have a right to hold him to high standards and to be irritated and want him replaced if they don’t think he’s doing a good enough job — especially at that rate of pay.

  56. bleedgreen:

    There are students attending the Warrior football games? And Mack is wrong about rain. The fans are there in the rain when the team is playing exciting football. I didn’t say winning football, but exciting football. When Hawaii lost to Fresno St, the fans felt satisfied. The team put on a good effort and fought till the end. Tho losses to UNLV and Utah St left all with a bad taste. That’s when the fans stop showing up. And I still say 25,000 is a good crowd when considering PPV, small fan base, and Hawaii’s disappointing losses to UNLV, San Jose St and Utah St. To expect more is not being realistic. Honolulu is small-town, period.

  57. Innocent Observer:

    Blaming the rain for lack of attendance of fans at the game is lame. Mack should man up and say the fans were not there because they are not a very good football team – the blame of which falls on the coaches. If the players are playing up to theri potential, it is the coaches responsibility to see that then do. When he stated that he won’t beg for fans to show up, that takes the cake. One of the goals for any head coach is to increase attendance at games, if he does not care whether fans come or not, is telling – he has literally giving up. If they lose to BYU (which is a great likelihood), he will be handed a pink slip the next day. He had stated that their recruiting are considered the better quality not only in the WAC but nationwide. Then, please explain why so many walk-ons are starting? This clearly shows thay your recruiting was not good if walk-ons (non-recruited) players can beat recurited players. Stop making excuses – success is shown on the field, merely talking about it is not enough.

  58. al:

    If Coach Mac like dakine better crowd dis Saturday…..bugga should hire the Punahou Alumni to hold their annual meeting at Aloha Stadium. Punahou Mafia is good for at least 5,000! Wat cha think?

  59. Lonomoku:

    Dave — I’m glad you’ve finally admitted your agenda. Why not just come out and say it vs picking apart everything Mack says and passing it off as your job to stir things up. You’re right. Taxpayers have the right to criticize an employee of the state who is paid to win. But when it’s made personal — and very negative, that kind of smearing rubs off on others including the coaching staff and the players. Think about it. When you hear criticism made against your newspaper — the monopoly that’s underachieved what it promised when we became a one newspaper town. You don’t take that personally? Even though much of the policy etc is made by your owner, publisher and others. It’s sad when what should be professional criticism of someone’s coaching ability becomes so personal. Like him or not, he’s the leader of that program and when you attack him personally and try to get the haters stirred up so they just keep the thread of negativity going, what’s really being accomplished? Why not stick to writing about what you see as his shortcomings as a coach. For what it’s worth — I was never a JJ fan and I seem to remember you played the same song with the JJ. Maybe when you get your wish and Mack gets fired, you should ask JD to put you on the search committee.

  60. shoichi84:

    Dave, the problem is that you are cherry picking the one quote out of the thousands you could choose in order to forward your agenda and to sensationalize a real non-issue. It’s one thing to use a quote like this if it is an example of a pattern of behavior; however, Coach Mac has consistently been very appreciative of Hawaii football fans and the people of Hawaii. If he is guilty of anything, it is that he does not often make the best choice of words.

    It bears repeating that I watched the press conference posted on the University of Hawaii website and this was the only quote I heard regarding the lack of fans in the student section.

    “I know that it was really exciting to have the students there…early in the season it was great. Quite honestly, I was wondering what had happened.”

    He went on to say

    “I’d love to have the students there. I mean, the students are a big part of it and the players like to play for the students.”

    Granted, the entire press conference may not have been posted. However, that is beside the point I’m trying to make. Responsible journalists don’t take a single quote that suits their sensationalist agenda and use it to spin the reality of the subject’s personality. Coach Mac has ALWAYS been appreciative of the support from the people of Hawaii. If you’re going attack him, pick another front. Next time find a legitimate one.

  61. slenzi:

    Aloha Dave! Enjoy reading your columns and blogs. Good to have a different perspective in a frenzied, emotional stew. Thanks for sticking by your fans, even when we shoot da messenger.

  62. el burro sabio:

    Dave Reardon:
    November 29th, 2011 at 12:46 pm
    49. You can say pretty much whatever you want about me and what you think about the way I go about my job. That’s fine. There are some misperceptions about that I might or might not address later.

    But you miss the biggest point in all of this, and it has nothing to do whether any of us played Division I football or even whether we even follow UH football or not. We, meaning the taxpayers of this state, foot the bill for Coach McMackin’s salary … and he is the highest paid public employee in the state. That means we have a right to expect a lot from him, on the field and off, as he represents the state. As Jim Donovan has said many times, we are all stakeholders in UH sports (whether we want to be or not). And we are all stakeholders when we pay someone $1.1 million a year and people have a right to hold him to high standards and to be irritated and want him replaced if they don’t think he’s doing a good enough job — especially at that rate of pay.

    Reardon, it is not true that the taxpayers of this state foot the bill for McMackin’s salary. The customers of UH Athletics foot the bill. There is a difference.

  63. ainokea:

    “we people?”….brah, you not from Hawaii. you wouldn’t be here unless we paid you 1 mil a year.

  64. Dave Reardon:

    62. Taxpayers subsidize University of Hawaii. University of Hawaii subsidizes athletics.Athletics pays McMackin’s salary. What am I getting wrong here?

  65. Dave Reardon:

    59. Thanks for reading. Sorry I didn’t make it through your last comment. It’s too long, and I stopped reading after you put words in my mouth.

  66. Ed:

    You can read Dave’s article and sense the frustration many of us have and debate it, or go to the feel good fraternity on the other blog

  67. Steve P:

    One of the reason for the varying attendance at the UH football games as I see it, is that First: Its too expensive for a lot of people when they already live in one of most expensive places on the planet. Second: The quality of opponents in the WAC are for the most part less than what they used to be when UH joined the conference.

    Also, factor in the beer, the security,… the really ‘too’ high price for food at the stadium, ….the PPV — that more than anything I can think of has reduced the attendance consistantly, and you have empty seats at the games. And, after 40 years of supporting this program I can tell you, Hawaii people don’t like to lose. They seem to take it personally, like the loss of some face when on nation wide TV we get the crap kicked out of us, regardless of what team does it!

  68. primo123:

    HOPEFULLY, Jim Donovan read Mac’s response.

  69. dreardon:

    67. Steve, I think you summed it up pretty well.

  70. sheldon:

    The university should have hired a great local coach when they had the chance in NORM CHOW. Another
    missed opportunity for Hawaii. With a local head coach and more local players the place would be packed.
    Bad leaders are making bad decisions for the university. Who heard of Greg Mac.

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