June Jones, the all-time winningest football coach at the University of Hawai’i, has not completely shut the door on returning as head coach of the Rainbow Warriors program.
According to multiple reports, Jones turned down the offer and the position on Friday afternoon. However, the 68-year-old shared his thoughts on the opportunity late Friday night, saying that he was “still interested” in the coaching opportunity.
“I am still interested in this job for the people of Hawaii but the job offered to me today there is no way I could accept with the conditions offered me,” Jones said in a tweet. “No coach in their right mind would accept!”
Jones detailed his grievances with his offer, saying “Dictating who can be on my staff and only 2 year contract..What recruit would come if I was here for 2 years???”
Hawai’i athletics director David Matlin released a statement earlier on Friday saying that Jones and the program “could not come to an agreement” for him to become the program's next football coach.
“I understand that there has been a lot of support for Coach [June] Jones this past week but he has declined our offer,” Matlin said. “I respect his decision and we need to move forward in our search.
At the end of the day, we couldn’t agree on a succession plan that I felt was important for our student-athletes and supporters of Rainbow Warrior football. We are working tirelessly to get a head coach on board to lead our program and are fully aware of the sensitivity to national signing day on Feb. 2.”
Jones’s agent told KGMB-TV in Hawai’i that he expects Jones will have further discussions about the job and that the door is not closed on the opportunity.
Jones’s interest to return as the Rainbow Warriors coach comes a week after former coach Todd Graham resigned from the program. Graham finished his tenure at Hawai’i with a 11–11 record.
Jones was the head football coach at Hawai’i from 1999 to ’07 before moving to become the head coach at SMU from 2008 to ’14. He resigned in 2014.
Prior to his college coaching experience, Jones spent three years in the NFL as a head coach of the Falcons from 1994 to ’96 before completing a 10-game stint as an interim head coach of the Chargers in 1998.
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