Team preview: Hawaii

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(All information as of June 20, 2008)


It's hard to say if new Hawaii head coach Greg McMackin is in an enviable position or facing a no-win situation.

After what Hawaii accomplished last year -- earning a BCS bid against powerful Georgia in the Sugar Bowl -- it's hard to imagine any encore topping the original show. McMackin, who was defensive coordinator during Hawaii's best two seasons under June Jones, finally got that quality head coaching job he was searching for in the place he wanted to be.

"When we left here after that '99 season, which was very special, I made a promise to my wife that we would come back to Hawaii when the time was right," McMackin said. "And coming back last season felt right to me and my family. I'm the luckiest guy in the world."

McMackin has had a long, well-traveled career with stops at major collegiate programs and quality NFL teams alike. In 1993 and '94, he served as defensive coordinator at Miami under head coach Dennis Erickson.

Those two seasons, the Hurricanes won two Big East championships and were ranked first in the nation in total defense, scoring defense and pass defense. He also took a woeful Utah defense in 1990 that was ranked No. 106 the year before to first in the WAC, so his track record on that side of the football is sound.