As of 1 p.m. this afternoon, Judge Karl Sakamoto deliberated after 4 1/2 hours of testimony rejected Kahuku’s injunction against the OIA, HHSAA and DOE state superintendent. It wasn’t a shock or even a surprise considering the precedent of ineligiblity-related forfeitures over the years.
Still, even Sakamoto and OIA attorney Lyle Hosoda expressed sympathy for the plight of Kahuku’s football players, who were caught in the crossfire when adults on one side (OIA) ruled that adults on the other side (Kahuku’s administration) had failed to properly check on a player who turned out to be a fifth-year senior.
Long story short, Kahuku’s perfect season is done after 10 wins. In the minds of media and coaches who vote in the Star-Advertiser’s Football Top 10, Kahuku is still prominent. The Red Raiders were atop every early ballot that arrived two days ago before the voting criteria was revised due to their disqualification.
In other words, in the hearts and minds of voters statewide, Kahuku still is No. 1, even if they’re out of the running. They’re officially out as of this afternoon, and so ends a painful saga for all parties involved.
Time will tell if the OIA and other leagues will ever truly improve their bookkeeping systems. After three severe disqualifications in the OIA over the past 30 months, nothing has changed, at least with one athletic department.
“Maybe we should do a case-by-case basis and have criteria to look at each one,” Kahuku coach Reggie Torres said in reference to the OIA’s “black-and-white” view of infractions.
Paul Honda, Star-Advertiser