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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted at 2:13 p.m., Friday, March 24, 2006

UH football promotes coach Reinebold

Advertiser Staff

Jeff Reinebold has been named the University of Hawai'i football team's defensive line coach.

"I'm very grateful, and I appreciate the opportunity," Reinebold said.

Reinebold replaces Vantz Singletary, who resigned three weeks ago to accept a similar position at Tennessee-Chattanooga, and fulfills "a dream I've had for a long time."

Last year, Reinebold, who has coached in college and the pros for more than two decades, was earning about $100,000 annually as the senior manager of international player development for the National Football League.

Reinebold, 48, who is a close friend of former UH linebacker David Maeva, said he always wanted to coach in Hawai'i. He said he had exchanged e-mails with UH coach June Jones for three years.

"Before I called June (last year) and really made a pitch, I made a decision in my heart," Reinebold said. "We're constantly talking to athletes about making sacrifices and having the discipline to go out and do the right thing, to dare to be great. I thought to myself, 'You're a phoney. You talk about all of those things. Do you really live it? If you did, you'd call June and say you're coming over for nothing.'"

And that's what Reinebold did, offering to work without pay. "June told me, 'It doesn't work that way, the NCAA won't allow it,'" Reinebold recalled. "I don't know if it was because I was a nuisance, but he offered me a position as graduate assistant."

Because a graduate assistant earns $830 per month, in addition to free tuition, Reinebold prepared by living "a monk-like life. I had one room. No phone. No TV. A lot of no's." He used his savings to subsidize his GA stipends.

Last season, Reinebold tutored the defensive ends, including Ikaika Alama-Francis and Melila Purcell III. He also was the point man in recruiting in Texas, helping the Warriors sign cornerbacks Gerard Lewis and Myron Newberry and safety/linebacker Jacob Patek.

Reinebold said he was awarded full custody of his 10-year-old son, Kekoa, in December. He said the promotion will enable him to better support Kekoa and his two children in college.

"This is the opportunity to have the best of both worlds," Reinebold said. "It gives me an opportunity to coach in a great place, and my kids have the opportunity to get the support from me that they deserve."