Hawaii loses veteran O-lineman for rest of season

  • 2019 July 25 SPT-Honolulu Star-Advertiser photo by Jamm Aquino/jaquino@staradvertiser.com Hawaii offensive lineman Kohl Levao poses for a portrait on Thursday, July 25, 2019 at UH Manoa in Honolulu, Hawaii. For 2019 UH Football preseason tab.

The University of Hawaii football team will be without one of its top offensive linemen for the rest of 2020.

“Kohl Levao is done for the season,” coach Todd Graham announced during Tursday’s Zoom conference.

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Graham indicated that Levao, a 6-foot-6, 350-pound senior, aggravated a leg injury during Saturday’s 34-10 loss at San Diego State.

“He’s had the same recurring injury, ” Graham said. “He’s been a champion. He tried to work through it.”

Graham said it was a mutual decision for Levao not to play in the Rainbow Warriors’ four remaining games.

“For his future, it’s something he needed to get fixed, ” Graham said. “That’s kind of the decision we made. I think that’s in his best interest, as well.”

Levao started in all 14 UH games in 2018 after transferring from City College of San Francisco. He played 10 games at right tackle before moving to center.

He was named to the 2019 watch list of the Rimington Trophy as the nation’s top center. But Levao suffered an injury during training camp and missed the first 11 games of the 2019 season. Because of leg issues, he did not make his first 2020 start until this past weekend.

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“He’s a warrior, ” Graham said. “He’s a tough, tough guy. You talk about fighting through it. He was basically playing through it. He still was going to have (a medical procedure ) done at the end of the season, anyway. But after injuring it again, it’s just going to keep happening every game.”

Michael Eletise, who started the first three games at left guard, is expected to open there against Boise State. The NCAA is giving players an extra season of eligibility, so Levao, a fifth-year senior, will be eligible to play next season.

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