University of Hawai’i head football coach Nick Rolovich announced the hiring of Michael Ghobrial as the program’s new special teams coordinator.
Ghobrial comes to Manoa from Tarleton State, where he coached the defensive line and outside linebackers in addition to special teams during the 2016 and ’17 seasons.
“Coach Ghobrial was incredibly impressive during the interview process and showed a real grinder element to his coaching style which I appreciate,” Rolovich said. “All his references describe him as a tireless worker who searches out information constantly. The amount of contacts he’s developed in a short time is impressive; I received calls from NFL coaches including (former UH linebacker) Jeff Ulbrich, now with the Atlanta Falcons to high-level college coordinators. We’re excited with his familiarity with recruiting the state of Texas. His special teams schematics is top notch and he also works with the specialists themselves which is important in the process of coaching that unit.”
At TSU, Ghobrial coached six all-conference performers and guided one of the league’s best special teams units. In 2017, the Texans were either No. 1 or 2 in kickoff return average, kickoff return touchdowns, blocked kicks, and kickoff coverage and featured the nation’s ninth-ranked return specialist and 15th-ranked punter. The Texans defense was also top three in the conference in sacks, tackles-for-loss, and total tackles.
In his first season at TSU, the Texans led the nation in forced fumbles and were ninth in turnovers gained. TSU also blocked seven kicks, including three punts, and was 19th nationally in kickoff coverage.
Following his debut season with the Texans, Ghobrial had the opportunity to study and work alongside the Detroit Lions coaching staff at their organized team activities (OTAs) after receiving a position through the Bill Walsh Minority Internship.
A native of Torrance, Calif., Ghobrial also coached at Colorado Mesa during the 2015 season coaching the defensive line, outside linebackers and was co-special teams coordinator. The Mavericks were Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference champions in his only season at CMU. His defensive line unit ranked first or second in the conference in tackles-for-loss, sacks, and total tackles and the defense was third nationally in turnover margin. In addition, the Mavericks were 12th nationally in blocked kicks, and first in the conference in punt return defense.
Ghobrial spent one year at Syracuse as a graduate assistant, helping coach the defensive line in 2014. He was also a graduate assistant at his alma mater, UCLA, during the 2012 and ’13 seasons and worked with the special teams and defensive line. Ghobrial assisted Ulbrich with special teams and helped the Bruins lead the nation in blocked kicks for two consecutive seasons. He also worked closely with Jeff Locke, Kevin McDermott, and Ka’imi Fairbairn, all of whom went on to play in the NFL. Also at UCLA, he was quality control coach in 2011 and undergraduate assistant from 2009-10.
A Bruin defensive end from 2006-07, Ghobrial received two degrees from UCLA with a bachelor’s degree in history in 2011 and master’s degree in social science and comparative education in 2014. He wrote a published thesis in leadership during his graduate work.
The Ghobrial File
Hometown: Torrance, Calif.
Alma Mater: UCLA (2011), UCLA (MS, 2014)
2018: Hawai’i, Assistant Coach (Special Teams Coordinator)
2016-17: Tarleton State, Assistant Coach (Defensive Line, Outside Linebackers, Special Teams Coordinator)
2015: Colorado Mesa, Assistant Coach (Defensive Line, Outside Linebackers, Co-Special Teams Coordinator)
2014: Syracuse, Graduate Assistant (Assistant Defensive Line)
2012-13: UCLA, Graduate Assistant (Assistant Special Teams, Assistant Defensive Line)
2011: UCLA, Quality Control
2009-10: UCLA, Undergraduate Assistant