Vili “The Warrior” and UH part ways

August 19th, 2012

“Vili The Warrior” Fehoko, the unofficial mascot of University of Hawaii football told me this afternoon he will no longer be on the UH sideline at games after 12 years. My Monday column is about Vili.

Fehoko and his wife, Linda, said it is time for him to spend more time with their four sons and he looks forward to watching his youngest boys, VJ and Braden, play football.

Vili was a “player’s mascot,” often chest-bumping fully uniformed players as they ran onto the field and firing them up in various ways.

“In a sport that involves a lot passion and energy he was always there to help us with that,” former running back and receiver Nate Ilaoa said.

But sources at UH say the school wants to “move in a different direction” and did not invite the sometimes controversial Fehoko to return this year.

Regardless of what you thought of him and how he left, “Vili The Warrior” was never boring.

19 Responses to “Vili “The Warrior” and UH part ways”

  1. Chicken Grease:

    You know, Vili was (well, is) good. Million times better than pink eraserhead (ya’ll remember that one).

    Could not — and will continue to not — stand the likes of ESPN fawning over certain, sometimes non-notable mascots . . . and boots into hell out and out ignore an animated character like Vili. With all of the “politically correct” admonitions and sponsorings, what? This yet another example of PC (and let’s include the stuffy stuffiness of those “dozens of complaints abut Vili here as well) “picking and choosing”? Our mascot actually SAID stuff. If the USC Trojan chanted ancient conquering sayings and epithets, that would be OK, and coming from a guy armed with a sword!? THAT wouldn’t be spooky? If the Duke Blue Devil brought out a blue colored pentagram onto the field for marketing purposes, that would be OK, right? World’s still scared of the indigenous savage, when it comes down to it, right? Despite all this PC.

    Maybe a Grease shouldn’t be so mad . . . I mean, sounds like Vili’s ready to move on, too.

    Just don’t mess with the “H” logo and go back to that prissy multicolored bend . . . I mean, please. Going back to the 1970s would not be changed.

    They wanna get rid of Vili, get rid o’those stupid white pants on the players, too . . . go BACK to black. Makes money at least.

  2. padron:

    I enjoyed Vili leading the cheers doing games. I was surprised to learn on the TV news report that he did all of this without pay. Free! Aloha Vili and all the best to you and your family. Thanks!

  3. cocobean:

    Heaven help us. The last line of the braking news “UH officials said they now plan to try to come up with a new, offical mascot for UH athletic teams.

    UH officials are the last people you want handling this. I hear Kikaida is looking for a gig and has a lot of pull with some politicos and a high powered donor. Plus two BORers said he was their hero when they were kids.

  4. cocobean:

    Shud have said breaking news.

  5. Chicken Grease:

    August 19th, 2012 at 11:45 pm

    I hear Kikaida is looking for a gig

    Hahahaah, a Grease likes this idea!!!! Terrific, terrific. Great idea!!! Put Kamen Riders 1 & 2 in the running as well!!! Can situate ‘em at both ends of the field! And as is, their outfits already got the matching team colors!

    Kick out the circus-comes-to-town Co Ed (or whatever it’s called), replace with requisite tokusatsu theme song!

  6. da beastman:

    Good for Vili, its about time he retired. He’s a nice man but he looks a little out of shape and getting too old to do this. Get someone who is in their 20′s and start a new tradition. No stupid costumes, but another warrior – obviously it cant be “the Warrior” like Vili or his wife will sue. I also heard on KITV that he was not paid. Thats not true and KITV should learn to investigate claims made before the put it up as news. Vili, his wife and lawyer negotiate annually for his salary. He’s a good guy, he lead cheers, made people happy, but he’s not a saint. He didnt get paid a lot but he got paid.

  7. slenzi:

    As much as we revered Wags, tried to forget Von Appen, and came into the 21st Century of NCAA Football under June Jones, Vili also took us to places a mascot never did before. The Vili era will be fondly remembered by both people in Hawaii and people who follow and broadcast NCAA Football around the country. Tip-o-da-hat to Vili and the Fehoko Ohana.

  8. Derrick:

    Vili brought a passion and an art to what he did that will never be duplicated. The entertainment factor alone was priceless. I will miss him and his troop of “jr warriors” beating their drums. He was on every television broadcast because he was original, entertaining and he always fired up the crowds. Best of luck Vili. You will be missed.


    too bad about vili, but will miss himand his sons. UH has the right to do what is wants to, but please don’t bring back that silly looking warrior in the muscle costume – it looked fake and stupid. maybe villi at times was over the top, but he did empitomize a “hawaiian” warrior – he was real. mascots in silly fake silly costumes just don’t cut it. this is football, not disneyland.

  10. MrK:

    I remember in the early days of Vili, he used to “chest bump”and “forearm” the players as they came out of the tunnel. He’d hit the linemen and linebackers hard! One time a group of DB’s/slots were coming out. Vili chest bumped one of them – a small DB, maybe 180 lbs or so, and the player flew backwards a couple of yards, and he almost fell on his okole. The other DBs and slots behind the first guy – quickly scampered to the side and they all chose not to chest bump Vili! It was hilarious!

  11. zzzzzz:

    He did it for free?? I guess that made him…….

    Free Vili!

    Someone should make a movie.

  12. Black Bean Chow Fun:

    Maybe Mr. Apple should hire a firm to look for a new Warrior mascot nation wide.

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