Warriors' biggest fundraiser is set at Murphy's

Don Murphy
Don Murphy

By Jason Tang - bio | email

HONOLULU (KHNL) - For the Warrior football team, 1998's 0-12 season was the darkest cloud in recent history.

But there is a silver lining.

Coach Fred Von Appen's firing brought June Jones to the islands.

And we all know where that took us.

Von Appen is also responsible for helping start the Warrior's biggest fundraiser.

Sports memorabilia packs Don Murphy's office.

It's all for his 13th annual Pigskin Pigout, a fundraiser with proceeds going to Na Koa, the Warrior football team's booster club.

"Hawaii's a very unique place and it just is a great way for people to get out and it's a real feel good night," said Murphy.

Murphy himself admits when he started the Pigout in 1996, they didn't know what they were doing.

But the reason was simple.

"Well, when Fred Von Appen came and started with the whole new crew, I decided to get involved with the University Athletic Program, and just met with them, and asked what are your needs, and well, we'd love to have a training table, we've never had one."

The Pigout's funded the training table since then.

And this year's money is also funding more than 60 Warrior summer scholarships.

Support has grown over the years, with the first Pigout raising about $39,000.

The more recent ones have topped $150,000.

And with a new coach this season, Murphy says support this year is crucial.

"It means a lot to them, to the coaches confidence, to the players confidence, you know you go up there and you talk to the players and it's a really good feeling, a real team thing, and it's just terrific."

Auction items this year include tickets to the Super Bowl, Final Four and the 2010 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach.

But the marquee item is tickets to the last Saturday game at Yankee Stadium.

The Pigskin Pigout is set for Thursday, starting at 5:30 at Murphy's Bar and Grill, in downtown.