Archive for March 25th, 2008

Brian Kajiyama feature article

March 25, 2008

About being a graduate assistant with the Warriors, Brian said:
“I’ve always loved football and always thought I’d be just a fan. Now I’m a grad assistant for the football team. I’ve never thought it would be possible.” (HA)

HA Note: “He became a paid graduate assistant in August after volunteering hundreds of hours for the team. Kajiyama also serves on the state’s Disability and Communication Access Board, and he is the former co-executive director of Pathways, an electronic forum for the National Institute on Multicultural Competence. Two weeks ago, he flew to Los Angeles to accept the Jacqueline Brand Leadership in Assistive Technology Award.”

About how Brian inspires others, Rep. Gene Ward said:
“Brian is an inspiration to all those who watch UH football and saw him living his dream. He couldn’t physically play, but he could be a part of what he loved. He’s an inspiration to the community and a lesson to go for what’s your passion.” (HA)

About why he is motivated to volunteer and get out in the community, Brian said:
“The way I see my part in all this is I’m helping to promote awareness for persons with disabilities and hopefully change the perception of cannot into one of can-do. I feel everyone has a responsibility to give back to their community.” (HA)

Quotes from Jim Donovan’s first day as AD

March 25, 2008

About how they would have a budget deficit if the Sugar Bowl money is not counted, JD said:
“It appears, right now, that on June 30 of ’08, the athletic department would be in a budget deficit for this fiscal year that would finish June 30 of ’08. It’s pretty clear that there would be a budget deficit.” (HSB)

HSB Note: “UH is looking at around $2.5 million from the Sugar Bowl after expenses. But chancellor Virginia Hinshaw and university president David McClain haven’t decided how much of that will go to athletics.”

About how the Sugar Bowl money would erase their deficit, JD said:
“If you apply that money to the athletic department, it appears that net money would move us from a deficit to a surplus.” (HSB)

HSB Note: “But that would be a surplus for just the year. The department has a cumulative deficit of somewhere between $4.5 million and $4.9 million.”

About how he walked around Cooke Field during his first day as AD, JD told the Honolulu Quarterback Club (in his first public appearance as AD):
“I did an hour walking around the track, taking a look at our asphalt football field.” (HSB)

HSB Note: “The goal is to have Cooke Field ready for use by the start of the 2008 football season. For spring practice, which begins Monday, the Warriors will continue to use the grass practice field. In reality, Donovan has been on the job since even before the Board of Regents approved his appointment March 13. Much of this past weekend was spent determining that the department will probably finish in the red for the 2007-08 fiscal year.”

HA Note: “To gather his thoughts and prepare for the day ahead, Donovan spent more than an hour circling the rainbow-hued track, each step of which seemed to drive home either memories of his 20 years spent at the school or furnish additional fodder for the ambitious to-do list he was gathering. Pointing to patches of weeds growing through the center of what he terms “the asphalt football field” on the Cooke Field infield, Donovan shook his head and admitted facilities occupy a place near the top of that rapidly lengthening list. He took note of branches on the roof of the athletic department, a missing sheet on the roof of Les Murakami Stadium. He bemoaned how the facilities had gotten that way and pondered potential solutions. But there would be no doubting whose job it is to find one. “The buck stops here,” Donovan said, double-jabbing an index finger into his desk to make the point.”

About how they will be in a deficit at the end of this fiscal year, JD said:
“There are about three months left, so it’s just a projection. It could still change. But the number I was told, I don’t see how it would change to be a surplus in a three-month time period.” (HSB)

About how he’s been going over the budget numbers, JD said:
“I spent about 10 hours on Saturday and another 7 hours (Sunday) going through a whole bunch of documents, including extensive budget information and I have my interpretations now. But if there’s anything I’ve learned about numbers, it’s that people can interpret them different ways, so I want to sit down with three key stakeholders and see if they agree with my interpretations before I start throwing numbers around.” (HSB)

HSB Note: “There’s good news though: If the athletic department gets to keep the money for playing in the Sugar Bowl (around $2.5 million), it will be in the black for the year. As for the cumulative deficit, the number is still not clear. Different interpretations have it between $4.5 million and $4.9 million. One obvious way to chip away at the deficit is to increase revenue via ticket sales. Attendance in most UH sports has been on a steady decline. Donovan wants to win back the fans, and get new young ones.”

About how he wants to attract the fans to go to their games, JD said:
“We’re going through a transition period. A whole generation went out and found something else to do. For people in their 20s and 30s now, it wasn’t part of their culture.” (HSB)

HSB Note: “Premium seating surcharges for the revenue sports aren’t going away, Donovan said. But he added that pricing structures will be revisited to make more seats affordable for more people.”

About how they need to study the pricing policies for their tickets, JD said:
“What I think we need to do is see if we can financially do some price modeling, to see what the attendance was when the prices were lower as opposed to now. Where are we? Have we outpriced ourselves with some of our seats?” (HSB)

HSB Note: “UH has had some tickets as low as $10 for football games at Aloha Stadium in recent years.”

About how low prices aren’t useful if the public doesn’t know about it, JD said:
“It’s one thing to have the pricing, but if no one knows it, it’s not necessarily effective. Especially when the perception is that prices are too high in general and they don’t know the lower prices exist.” (HSB)

About how he’ll meet with UH student government leaders, JD said:
“We’ve given them things in the past, but we never sat down with them and asked them what they want.” (HSB)

HSB Note: “On facilities, Donovan said a bill that would give UH control of Aloha Stadium was “gutted” last week, and now building a stadium on university land in Kapolei is being explored.”

About how the Aloha Stadium site is the best location for a stadium, JD said:
“I cannot see a location on Oahu better than where Aloha Stadium is now. Three major roads meet there. The parking situation, I think we all use that as a crutch.” (HSB)

JD talked about how the UH baseball stadium was one of the best in the country when it was built in 1984, but:
“I don’t think it’s in the top 20 now. We haven’t had the repair and maintenance funds.” (HSB)