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Hawaii football families make most of fan ban at Homecoming game

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Hawaii football families make most of fan ban at Homecoming game

 It's a battle that now has mayor and governor clashing: the debate over fans in Hawaii football stands.

Both sides of the argument with legitimate cases: the Rainbow Warriors want their families to celebrate their hard work, but Hawaii Governor David Ige has been steadfast that no large gatherings will take place as long as hospitalization rates in the state continue to go up.

"Everyday I wake up hoping they announce that we can have fans at our games," Hawaii head coach Todd Graham said this week. "We don't have that many games left at home. And for homecoming, it would have been nice to come out and play in front of our home crowd. I do think it's very detrimental to our program and our fanbase and to our players and players' families. I think we can do that and do it safely with fans here."

For a majority of this season, the University of Hawaii remains the only college football team without at least some fans in the stands. A Hawaii football game--once a raucous environment--is now a ghost town.

For UH opponents, it's an advantage and for the Warriors: it's a feeling that leaves the team wanting more.

 "Having fans here, that does play a big role just having people around us and having a good atmosphere," UH cornerback Cameron Lockridge said. "And then going on the road having those fans at our backs talking the whole time does play a toll. We just have to play off our own energy. You have to bring that energy from the locker room to the field."

But this week has been especially hard for one UH fan Kathleen Bennett. Bennett is the grandmother of Hawaii's #44 Wyatt Tucker, the team's long snapper.

Bennett has been to a ton of Hawaii games in the past and was planning on attending this weekend's game along with another special fan--her late husband.

Despite losing her husband and being shutout of seeing her grandson play in person, she's making the most out of homecoming weekend.

"My husband recently passed away three months ago so on the 28th we went to the UCLA-Hawaii game and that was my husbands birthday. We honored him at that game because he loved sports and watching Wyatt play and was so proud of him," Bennett said. "This weekend is going to be special because it'll give me a chance to see the kids, see the grandkids and hang out. It'll be very special this time around."



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