HONOLULU -- June Jones has resigned as Hawaii's football
coach, reports said Saturday.
Kent Untermann, a former Hawaii player and member of Na Koa, the
school's booster club, told KHNL that Jones' was leaving because of
frustration with how the athletic department was run, not because
he felt his salary was too low.
"He wants to be here but he has come to the point where he
feels nothing is going to change," Untermann said. "He feels he
has done his part but hasn't gotten the support and leadership from
Jones, 54, who just finished coaching the most successful season
in Hawaii history, is being courted by SMU for its head coach
Jones was en route to Dallas on Saturday to talk to SMU
officials and could not be reached for comment.
The Dallas Morning News reported SMU has offered Jones between
$1.7 million and $2 million a year.
Jones currently earns $800,016 a year under a five-year contract
with Hawaii that expires June 30.
The Honolulu Advertiser, citing Jones' friend Al Souza, reported
Jones resigned Saturday morning.
Jones said he would leave the university because of a lack of
commitment from athletic department leaders, among other reasons,
the paper said.
"This breaks his heart," Souza said.
Jones also sent letters to friends announcing that he is
resigning, the Advertiser and television reports said.
He thanked his friends for their support in the letter, in which
he listed several reasons why he would no longer coach at the
school. Full details of the letter were not available.
Untermann held on to the hope Jones could still be persuaded to
remain in Hawaii.
"I don't give up easily. Even if he semiofficially resigned, if
he hasn't taken the job with SMU there's always a last-minute hope
there's something we can do," Untermann said.
Reports of the resignation came even though Hawaii offered Jones
a new contract that would make him the highest paid coach in the
Western Athletic Conference.
Hawaii would not say how much it offered Jones. But figures
provided by the university show Fresno State's Pat Hill, who earns
an annual salary of $1,229,996, is currently the highest-paid WAC
Hawaii athletic director Herman Frazier said he asked Jones to
call him before deciding on SMU's offer.
The Warriors finished this season 12-0 before losing to Georgia
in the Sugar Bowl -- the school's first bowl appearance on the
mainland since 1992.