Former Hawaii coach June Jones rejects offer to return

John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports
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HONOLULU — Former Hawaii football coach June Jones has declined a proposal to return to lead the program for a second time.

The school’s wins leader in Division I, Jones met with the athletic director David Matlin, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported, and rejected the offer when he learned it would only be for two years and Matlin would have to approve the assistant coaches.

Jones took to social media to voice his displeasure with the terms.

“I am still interested in this job for the people of Hawaii, but the job offered me today, there is no way I could accept with the conditions offered me,” the 68-year-old tweeted. “No coach in their right mind would accept!

“Dictating who can be on my staff and only 2 year contract . what recruit would come if I was here for 2 years?. This has never been about money – but it is about giving me the ability to turn our program around and not have people tell me who is on my staff or how to coach my team.”

Jones’ agent, Leigh Steinberg called the breakdown a “bump in the road” and hoped discussions would go on.

Jones’ rejection leaves former Hawaii quarterback Tim Chang and former center Brian Smith as possibilities to replace Toodd Graham, who resigned last Friday amid controversy after completing the second-year of a five-year contract. He stepped down a week after former players and some parents testified before a state legislative hearing, criticizing the coach’s management style and relationships with players. More than a dozen players entered the transfer portal.

Assistant Jacob Yoro is serving as interim head coach while the school searches for a replacement. The team has about 20 scholarship spots available with the signing period for recruits beginning on Feb. 2

The Rainbow Warriors were 6-7 overall this season, including 4-7 in the Mountain West after going 5-4 overall and 4-4 in the conference the year before.

Clemson gives raises, contract extensions to staff

Ken Ruinard/USA TODAY NETWORK
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CLEMSON, S.C. — Clemson’s board of trustees approved raises for special teams coordinator and cornerbacks coach Mike Reed and defensive tackles coach Nick Eason.

Reed and Eason also received one-year extensions keeping them tied to the Tigers through Jan. 31, 2026.

Reed, who’s been with the Tigers since 2013, had his yearly salary increased $50,000 to $800,000. Eason, the former Clemson standout defensive lineman, joined the staff this past season. He also had his compensation upped by $50,000 to $800,000.

Seven other assistants were given one-year extensions by the trustees’ compensation committee, but without a raise in salary.

Co-defensive coordinators Wes Goodwin and Mickey Conn had their contracts extended through Jan. 31, 2026.

Defensive ends coach Lemanski Hall, tight ends coach Kyle Richardson, offensive line coach Thomas Austin, running backs coach C.J. Spiller and wide receivers coach Tyler Grisham all got one-year extensions through Jan. 31, 2025.

New offensive coordinator Garrett Riley last month received a three-year contract at $1.75 million per season.

Clemson will pay its 10 on-field assistants $7.475 million this season, an increase of $925,000 from the total for 2022.

The Tigers went 11-3 last season, winning the Atlantic Coast Conference title for the seventh time in the past eight seasons.

South Carolina’s Beamer suspends three freshmen from program

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Corey Perrine/USA TODAY NETWORK
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COLUMBIA, S.C. — South Carolina coach Shane Beamer said freshmen Monteque Rhames II, Anthony Rose and Cameron Upshaw were suspended from the football program.

There was no reason given for the suspensions in the school’s statement Friday. Online records showed Rhames, 18, was booked last night and was being held at the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center on charges of carrying weapons on school property and obstructing justice.

“Our student-athletes know what is expected of them,” Beamer said. “They know that both the university and the football program will hold them accountable for their actions and decisions.”

None of the three have played for the Gamecocks.

Rose is a 6-foot-1, 190-pound defensive back from Miami who enrolled in January 2022 and redshirted this season. Rhames and Upshaw were part of South Carolina’s latest recruiting class and enrolled last month.

Rhames is a 6-5, 235-pound defensive lineman from Sumter and Upshaw is a 6-2, 193-pound safety from Perry, Florida.