Quotes from the local papers

About the amazing ticket sales for the Hawaii Bowl after Notre Dame was announced, David Matlin said:
“That is just phenomenal.” (HA)

HA Note: “David A.K. Matlin, the game’s executive director, said ticket purchases have been made from nearly 40 of the 50 states and several Canadian provinces in the first three days since the Dec. 24 matchup with the University of Hawai’i was announced Sunday.”

HA Note: “As of mid-day yesterday, Matlin said approximately 32,000 tickets had been issued for the game, this despite a brief weather-related outage yesterday. Approximately 12,000 tickets, including 5,000 in the first 24 hours, have been sold since Sunday.”

About their fast-paced ticket sales, Matlin said:
“It is a very good pace. For anybody who is thinking of attending the game, I’d buy now.” (HA)

HA Note: “Notre Dame will travel 4,327 miles to get to the Sheraton Hawai’i Bowl, where it is assured of a handsome profit for this bowl season. Meanwhile, its opponent, the University of Hawai’i, is struggling to break even in the postseason despite playing a bus ride away in its backyard bowl.”

HA Note: “As a BCS signatory, Notre Dame will receive $1.3 million from the BCS even though the Fighting Irish did not qualify for a bowl this year and, at 6-6, just made the minimum qualification for eligibility for any bowl. In addition, it will receive $600,000 for its appearance in the Hawai’i Bowl, the same amount that would have gone to a Pac-10 team had one been available under the conference’s contract with the game.”

About how Notre Dame will make money during Bowl season, John Heisler (Notre Dame senior associate AD) said:
“Those who have suggested that Notre Dame will lose money by participating in the Hawai’i Bowl are incorrect, the combined revenue we will receive for postseason competition this year… (will) ensure that the university will not lose money on this trip.” (HA)

Note: Of course, Notre Dame would make even *more* money if they didn’t not go to the Hawaii Bowl…the BCS payment to Notre Dame is automatic whether or not they go to a bowl game.

About how UH will receive $400k for going to the Hawaii Bowl, JD said:
“we’re doing everything we can to break even on this (game).” (HA)

HA Note: “In UH’s case, approximately $130,000 to $140,000 of its bowl expenses are expected to go to coaches’ bonuses and players’ rewards. Head coach Greg McMackin’s contract provides for a $20,000 bonus for appearance in a non-BCS bowl and an additional $10,000 if UH wins the game. In addition, UH’s nine assistant coaches receive bonus payments equal to a combined average month’s salary, which is expected to amount to approximately $8,000 per man. Under NCAA rules, a school may give its players bowl gifts valued at no more than $350 per player. UH could have 111 players qualify for gifts. Overall, UH expects to pay for 80 rooms for its anticipated official travel party of 111 players, coaches and staff. Donovan said staffers who normally traveled for UH road games this year would make up the official party housed in the team’s Waikiki hotel.”

Heisler said that Notre Dame will take:
“105 players, plus the normal road game staff (including their families) and additional others required to administrate the bowl week ā€” also will be a University contingent (officers, etc.) that will not travel on our charter but will come to game.” (HA)

About how the WAC could receive a bonus from the Hawaii Bowl if ticket sales exceed 40,000, WAC commissioner Karl Benson said:
“I am expecting there will be a (bonus) split and that the WAC will receive more than the $400k and that this will be the biggest payday the WAC has received from the Sheraton Hawai’i Bowl.” (HA)

HA Note: “The additional money would not go to UH directly, but to the WAC’s bowl fund, which underwrites losses from other games its teams have played in. Five WAC teams are playing in bowls this year and each receives $400,000 plus airfare. Only UH and Louisiana Tech (in the Independence Bowl) will not require flights. Proceeds from those games are later balanced against liabilities with the nine members equally sharing in profits or underwriting losses, meaning UH could be forced to toss in more money if liabilities exceed profits. This year the WAC is projecting pluses from appearances by its teams in the Hawai’i Bowl (UH), Poinsettia Bowl (Boise State) and Independence Bowl (Louisiana Tech). The Humanitarian Bowl (Nevada) and New Mexico Bowl (Fresno State) are projected as losses. Most of those bowls carry ticket commitments.”

About how appearing in bowl games are important for conference visibility, even if they lose money, Heisler said:
“In the bigger picture, it should be remembered that participation in bowl games is important to the football program and the university beyond dollars and cents ā€” both for the practice and playing time it provides our student-athletes and for our obligation to be a responsible and cooperative partner with others in collegiate athletics.” (HA)

About the importance of Notre Dame’s football program to their University, Heisler said:
“… the health of our football program is important to Notre Dame as a whole, since it is the primary generator of the millions of dollars that athletics contributes to the university. According to a study last year by Forbes Magazine, some $21.1 million of the athletic department’s $45.8 million profit underwrites academic programs, which is as much as the next five most valuable programs contributed to their respective schools combined.” (HA)

About his friendship with fellow UH commit Chauncy Winchester-Makainai, Benson Maafala said:
“I’ve been long-time friends with Chauncy from O-line camps.” (HSB)

HSB Note: “Maafala, a guard who was also being recruited by California, Washington and Arizona, joined a dozen players in the game who have committed to the Warriors. Maafala said he informed the UH coaches of his intention to sign with the Warriors, though he may still take other trips.”

About Maafala and Winchester-Makainai, UH commit Chad Lopati said:
“They’re great athletes. Just going up against them the last two weeks, it’s been a workout.” (HSB)

About how they benefit from the Hawaii/Polynesia-Mainland All-star game by getting to know their future teammates, Corey Nielsen said:
“We can start building the team camaraderie now. It’s been great getting to know the guys.” (HSB)

About playing for the Hawaii/Polynesia team, Corey Nielsen said:
“I’ve been a Hawaii fan my whole life. So to represent Hawaii, and Polynesia really, it’s a real honor.” (HSB)

About how championship teams win with offense now, Renner said:
“As you saw when June Jones was here, it’s hard to stop four or five playmakers on offense. It’s impossible. Now, you don’t win championships because of defense. Teams win now because of offense. In high school and college, the skill level has taken off. You know you have to score 40 points to win.” (HSB)

About JJ (who was his position coach with the Atlanta Falcons), Andre Rison said:
“I played five or six years for him and I consider him a friend and a great coach. I owe him a lot for what he did. Being in that system, you’ve got to be smart. A slot’s got to know the defensive coverages, blitzes, dogs.” (HSB)

About how today’s players have more exposure, but lack the old-school work ethic, Rison said:
“I think they’re lazy in the sense that when we grew up, we didn’t have anything. Now, in an instant, a kid can be seen anytime.” (HSB)

About turning down the chance to coach with the KC Chiefs to instead assist longtime friend and coach Courtney Hawkins, Rison said:
“I love coaching kids. I’ve always been coaching, in a sense, even when I was a player.” (HSB)


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