Roosevelt football

Latest news

Latest news

NLI signing day: Kaeo Akana makes it official with Utah

By Paul Honda on December 15, 2021

For a long time, Kaeo Akana and his teammates ran sprints of 20, 40, 60, 80, 100 and 140 yards up Pauoa Road at 5:15 a.m. The stillness, the darkness of early morning was always there for Akana and teammates like Jackie Johnson III. This time, the early morning was shared with family and friends as Akana arose and signed his national letter of intent to play football at Utah. “I got up at 5 o’clock,” Akana said of his […]

OIA D-I chase in hands of frontrunners Moanalua, Aiea, Waipahu

By Paul Honda on November 24, 2021

Boil it down and the puzzle of OIA Division I football playoff possibilities is still a Rubik’s Cube of wonder. For one-loss teams Moanalua, Waipahu and Aiea, earning one of the two playoff spots — the only playoff game is a championship matchup — is a matter of seizing the day. “Win and we’re in,” Na Menehune coach Vince Nihipali said of the title game. “We control our own destiny, and these kids have that golden opportunity to close this […]

Grit and guts by Roosevelt in nonconference loss to ‘Iolani

By Paul Honda on November 20, 2021

Some teams chose to keep their bye weeks. Roosevelt wanted to play one of the best in Division I. In the aftermath of a 40-7 loss to No. 6 ‘Iolani, one that doesn’t count in the OIA Division I standings, Rough Riders coach Kui Kahooilihala lamented the defeat. Roosevelt lined up without eight starters on Friday. One of them, highly-recruited linebacker Kaeo Akana, was on a recruiting trip on Friday. Yet, the Rough Riders defense was steady in the first […]


Committed: Rocky Mountain journey leads Roosevelt’s Kaeo Akana to Boise State

By Paul Honda on June 21, 2021

In the end, if this is so, Kaeo Akana’s selection process was never about branding. In fact, Akana’s oral commitment to Boise State was all about home. The right fit. When the Roosevelt football standout committed to the Broncos on Saturday, he joined a second family — and spurned a host of Pac-12 offers. In all, he has 16 scholarship offers. “To me, it doesn’t matter. Football is football. It doesn’t matter what conference you’re in or how big your […]

Roosevelt senior Jackie Johnson III prepares for trench life at LTU

By Paul Honda on February 2, 2021

On a good day, Jackie Johnson III is on calm waters, reeling in lunch and dinner. On a better day, he maneuvers past hulking trench men to make plays in the backfield. For months and years, Johnson has been diligently working on his skills as an interior defensive lineman. Pumping iron, running the streets of Pauoa Valley, engaged in hand-to-hand combat in pre-dawn workouts at the beach with his Trench Dawgz brothers. Slowly, surely the interest level rose from potential […]

SDSU, Dartmouth make it 12 offers for Roosevelt junior Kaeo Akana

By Paul Honda on February 1, 2021

The connection between Hawaii and San Diego seems to get shorter over time. San Diego State became the 12th Division I football program to make a football scholarship offer to Kaeo Akana on Friday. At 6 feet, 3.5 inches and 205 pounds, the defensive end from Roosevelt now has offers from three Mountain West Conference schools, seven Pac-12 schools, and Nebraska and Dartmouth. The Aztecs hired former Moanalua coach Savaii Eselu last year. “Coach Savaii and I were talking story […]

ON THIS DATE IN 1945: Tom Carpenter and Punahou make Roosevelt pay

By Jerry Campany on October 26, 2020

You probably could hear the collective gasp in the press box by Hawaii scribes Joe Anzivino and Bill Kim. On this date in 1945, Roosevelt coach Neil “Cocky” Donahue spit in the face of conventional wisdom and ordered his quarterback to throw the ball despite a 13-7 lead with less than five minutes to play. Both sportswriters blasted the decision after Peter Wilson picked off Roy Rosa‘s pass to give the Buffanblu the ball at Roosevelt’s 11-yard line. Wilson scored […]

ON THIS DATE IN 1954: Tiki Vasconcellos and Roosevelt back off

By Jerry Campany on October 8, 2020

On this date in 1954, Tiki Vasconcellos and Roosevelt scored five touchdowns in the first half and overwhelmed Farrington 38-7. Quarterback Clayton Ching scored two touchdowns before being pulled because of the rout. Vasconcellos pulled his starters after the fourth touchdown, showing some mercy toward the overmatched Governors. Punahou ended up winning the ILH that year, but the Rough Riders took it the following three years.