NINTH IN A SERIES
Tim Seaman is the man being counted on to help Kaiser rise again.
The Cougars hit rock bottom last year, forfeiting all but one of their games due to friction between parents and then-head coach Arnold Martinez and a lack of varsity players suiting up.
It was pretty much a lost season.
Seaman is not new to the head coaching circuit. He was head coach at Kaiser and McKinley in the 1990s.
He’s got a good grip on his group of players for 2018. Many from the JV ranks are on the varsity now.
“We’re getting good leadership from seniors like Noah Matsumoto (RB and DB) and Reece Kaonohi (LB),” he said. “Junior Hunter Yamada (LB) is someone who has a lot of potential as a leader. We’ve got some young receivers and defensive backs who look like they have some skill. As always, the key will be the development of the offensive and defensive lines. There’s a bunch of new faces there who are working hard and it’ll be interesting to see who steps up. We should have some depth at linebacker and there’s the possibility that some of them will help us out along the defensive front.
“Obviously last year was a tough year for Kaiser football. Hopefully our kids learned what it’s like to persevere through adversity and remain a team. It appears that they are doing just that. It’s a new season and time to go to work.
“Our team focus right now is to grow in our understanding of how to play the game of football. We lack game experience and we’ve got a lot of athletes from other sports who are learning the fundamentals. Football is new to some of them, so there are some challenges there. With the right attitude and work ethic, we will continue to grow and compete.”
Seaman voiced his thoughts about the Cougars’ leaders:
>> Noah Matsumoto, running back, defensive back: “Not the biggest guy in the world, but he plays hard every down. We will use him all over the field — running back, slot receiver, defensive back, kick returner. He’s a great leader and someone who has really encouraged guys from other sports to come out and give football a shot.”
>> Dre Falls, wide receiver, defensive back: “A quick, all-around athlete who is another positive-attitude guy. You’ll see him on the field a lot for us, offensively, defensively, special teams. Very coachable and a young man who we think has a bright future.”
>> Aisea Toetuu, two-way lineman: “Aisea is a guy who the staff is all very proud of. He’s motivated, comes to work every day, and continues to improve his technique. Great attitude and someone who we are counting on this season.”
>> Mason Yoshino, wide receiver: “Really bright future for this kid. Only a sophomore, but he handles himself like a three-year varsity player. Continues to work on his game and it shows. He should have a big role in our offense.”
>> Hunter Yamada, linebacker: “Hunter puts a lot of time in the weight room and we have high hopes for him on defense. Hasn’t played a lot of linebacker, but with his strength and quickness, we think it’s a good fit. He’ll be a big part of special teams, too.”
Kaiser opens the season at home Aug. 3 with a nonleaague game against Aiea, a Division I squad. The Cougars will kick off the new OIA-ILH alliance in Division II at home against Kalaheo on Aug. 10.
Next in series: Campbell Sabers.