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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Sunday, October 7, 2007

Kelly's FG was no small feat

By Michael Tsai
Advertiser Staff Writer

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

UH kicker Dan Kelly made his point with a career-long 54-yard field goal that tied it at 10.

Photos by ANDREW SHIMABUKU | The Honolulu Advertiser

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Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

UH linebacker Brad Kalilimoku, wired with a microphone to the Aloha Stadium public-address system, led the Warriors and the crowd with a ha'a before last night's game against Utah State.

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Dan Kelly's kicking leg has come a long way since he joined the Warriors football team, and now so do his field goal attempts.

"When you do get opportunities in this offense, it's going to be from long range and you're going to have to have a leg on it," Kelly said. "I didn't come in having a long leg and I think that restricted the number of attempts I had when I was a freshman and sophomore. Now that my leg has grown, Coach Jones has seen the progress and he has more and more confidence in me every day."

That was evident in the first quarter of last night's game against Utah State when Kelly got the call for a 54-yard attempt.

Kelly nailed the field goal to tie the game 10-all, and in the process earned himself the No. 5 spot on UH's list of longest field goals. His previous high was a 52-yarder against Purdue in 2005.

Jason Elam and Justin Ayat share the record of 56 yards; they also share the next spot with respective 55-yarders.

"They're both great kickers so it's an honor to be mentioned alongside them," Kelly said. "This is my job and I'm going to do it until it's time to do the next thing."

Kelly said his off-season regimen of weights and daily kicking have slowly and surely increased his leg strength, enabling him to increase the distance of his attempts.

His technique for point-after attempts is the same as it is for kickoffs. He estimates his range for field goals at 57 to 58 yards.

With Jones' growing confidence in his kicker, Kelly just may get to prove it.

Move over, Metallica: You've seen the ha'a, now hear the ha'a. Chant leader Brad Kalilimoku's booming voice was carried over the stadium sound system during the pre-game ritual, providing a soundtrack to the visual spectacle.

Aye, captains: Junior offensive lineman Rustin Saole and senior cornerback Myron Newberry served as last night's game captains for UH.

Nice hair: Of all of the things that one might want to borrow from quarterback Colt Brennan his impressive arm, his telegenic presence, his soon-to-come NFL contract his latest hair-do seemed the least likely to actually be imitated.

But the visually iffy representation of Hawaiian islands images overlayed on blonde crewcut was exactly what 30-year-old Waipahu resident Corbett Dwiggins was shooting for as he prepared for last night's game. Dwiggins had bleached his hair a week earlier, and a day before the game, his wife Sarah downloaded a few images of the island chain from the internet, made some cut-outs, then set to work with green dye and a toothbrush. And Dwiggins, for one, couldn't have been happier with the result. "Big time," he said.

Reach Michael Tsai at mtsai@honoluluadvertiser.com.