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January 16, 2008

McMackin named Hawaii coach

HONOLULU Greg McMackin has been hired as the head coach at Hawaii, school officials said Wednesday.

McMackin just completed his second run as the Warriors' defensive coordinator, having also served in 1999. Hawaii won Western Athletic Conference titles in both seasons.

"I am honored and very humbled to accept the head coaching position at the University of Hawaii," said McMackin, who replaces June Jones, who accepted the head coaching job at SMU last week.

Jones, who left Hawaii after leading the Warriors to a 12-1 season, on Sunday said he supported a bid by McMackin to succeed him because that would be the best way to build on the team's successes.

McMackin has years of NFL and college experience. He just completed his second tour as the Warriors' defensive coordinator, having also served in 1999. Hawaii won Western Athletic Conference titles in both seasons.

This past season, McMackin installed an aggressive 4-3 scheme with Hawaii finishing ranked 34th in the nation in total defense, allowing 347.8 yards, the best in Jones' nine seasons at Hawaii.

The Warriors were 93rd the previous season under Jerry Glanville, despite having a team that finished 11-3 record and featured two defensive lineman who were drafted by the NFL. The Warriors were 102nd in 2005 and 116th in 2004.

McMackin also served as the San Francisco 49ers' linebackers coach from 2003-05. Before that, he was the defensive coordinator for three seasons at Texas Tech.

He was also the defensive coordinator for the Seattle Seahawks from 1995-98 and at several colleges, including Miami.

His last head coaching position was at Oregon Tech from 1986-89, where he had four winning seasons.

A nine-member selection committee, headed by acting athletics director Carl Clapp and Chancellor Virginia Hinshaw, was scheduled to interview McMackin and the other candidates late Tuesday.

"The selection process is moving along as swiftly as possible. However, it's important that the necessary time is taken to make the correct decision," said John McNamara, associate athletics director. "I think in every search for a head coach, I think you want to reach a decision as quickly as possible."

A day after Jones accepted the SMU job, athletics director Herman Frazier was fired after receiving widespread criticism about failing to re-sign the coach.

The Warriors have several key defensive players returning next season, but will have to rebuild the offense. The team has lost quarterback Colt Brennan and all four starting receivers, including Davone Bess and Ryan Grice-Mullen, who have decided to skip their senior season and enter the NFL draft.

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