UH lands O-tackle

May 1st, 2014
By

1912111_219359131590415_179279379_nOne of the top offensive linemen in American Samoa has decided to join the Rainbow Warriors' 2015 recruiting class.

Eperone Moananu of Tafuna High told the Star-Advertiser he has agreed to accept a football scholarship, will sign in February, and join the Rainbow Warriors for the 2015 season.

Moananu is 6-2 and 290 pounds.

He plays tackle for Tafuna, which has won consecutive high school championships under Okland Salave‘a.

UH line coach Chris Naeole, who is the point recruiter, was a Colorado player when he met Salave‘a, a Buffalo alumnus.

Moananu is the third pledge to UH's 2015 class, following offensive tackle Jordan Agusiva of Mililani High and linebacker Jonah Moi of Riverside Community College.

What's more, quarterback Aaron Zwahlen, receiver/running back John Ursua, and offensive lineman Gus Lavaka will join the Warriors next year after returning from church missions.

The 2015 class:

> Jordan Agusiva, OT, Mililani HS

> Dayton Furuta, LB, Mililani HS

> Donald Lambert, WR, Moanalua HS

> Gus Lavaka, OL, Kearnes HS

> Eperone Moananu, OL, Tafuna HS

> Jonah Moi, LB, Riverside CC

> John Ursua, RB/SB, Cedar HS

> Manly Williams, S, Farrington HS

> Aaron Zwahlen, QB, Downey HS

129 Responses to “UH lands O-tackle”

  1. papajoe2:

    Firster.


  2. papajoe2:

    Way to go Coach Naeole!


  3. papajoe2:

    Michele Wie finishes tied for 1st at 4 under. Many golfers still on the course. Unfortunately, Brittaney Fan of Hawaii, shot an 8 over 79 amd is in the back of the pack..


  4. tommui:

    GOOD MORNING HAWAII!

    Go get 'em Coach Naeole!


  5. papajoe2:

    and.


  6. papajoe2:

    Oh, good morning everybody!


  7. Stephen Tsai:

    Mornin' folks.


  8. jm2375:

    Good morning Tsaikos!

    Welcome to the Warriors, Mr. Moananu.

    Saw "Draft Day" last night with a few other Tsaikos. Interesting movie.


  9. jeezy33:

    Wow Naeole getting after it.. All we need is Ulu Perry, Grant Burguillos, and Tyler Whisenhunt.. 2 out of 3 would be good


  10. Stephen Tsai:

    jm2375
    Are you a Cleveland Browns' fan now?


  11. Stephen Tsai:

    By the way, please wish JM2375 a happy birthday!


  12. PONO:

    I think it's always a good idea to get at least one recruit per year from American Samoa to keep the pipelines open. Don't know much about the kid but based on size I imagine they will slide him to an interior line position.


  13. shadow:

    DL Aydon from Leone High (shown by Kapakahi a few days ago) can be dominating! Hope Chris/Ed can land him too.


  14. Musashi:

    JM2375 happy birthday!


  15. Haleakala:

    Building a solid O-line for the future!


  16. tommui:

    And a Happy Birthday JM2375!


  17. Derek:

    Recruits, Recruits, Recruits. It takes a lot of skill to be a very good talent evaluator and I hope the coaching staff at the Univ. of Hawaii are doing just that. At the same time, you cannot predict a player will grow from 6'2" to 6'6" and from 290 to 330 in a short time. It reminds me about David Robinson. He went to Navy as a 6'6" freshman, and ended up a 7'1" by the time he was a sophomore.


  18. jm2375:

    ST - #10 NEVER!!! HTTR!!!
    (and OMG, the Wizards are in the playoffs)


  19. Stephen Tsai:

    jm2375:
    I was so impressed with the aerial views of all those stadiums.
    I'm starting to get the football withdrawals.


  20. Rodney:

    Any Whitek news?
    Praying for good news.


  21. Loa:

    morning gang!

    happy birthday jm2375


  22. Papakolei-n:

    Good job coach Naeole! Thax ST for the info on Ursua, been waiting 2 yrs 4 him to put on a warrior uniform and see how he can help the team.


  23. Stephen Tsai:

    There might be a possible meeting with Wittek in the near future, say, next week. We'll see what happens.


  24. Stephen Tsai:

    Papakolei-n:
    In the old days, the missionaries had to wait until they were 19, so they had an extra year to prepare. Now that they can go when they're 18, it gets chaotic after high school graduation. So Ursua and Lavaka ended up leaving a year later, missing three seasons.
    Yes, yes, their mission work is more important. But it does delay the process.


  25. jeezy33:

    Hawaii should have reached out to Matt Joeckel at this point. Need to get a high level QB here somehow... Almost lock to start at Hawaii. Not a lock at TCU.


  26. Stephen Tsai:

    Jeezy:
    I think there are about four QBs interested in Hawaii.


  27. boya_jr:

    Right on with the recruiting!


  28. jeezy33:

    26. I guess I just need to be patient. I've never been this high on our defense in a long time and a quality D1 QB can really elevate the team given Fales, Carr, Smith, and Southwick are gone...


  29. papajoe2:

    From yesterday's blog, there were 2 large gentlemen (not related) on the cruise ship that I was on. They were a little older than college age and both were from New Zealand. I asked the younger one to send his brothers, if any, to UH. My wife asked him how tall he was. 6'6". Must have weighed around 320lbs.


  30. Rodney:

    #25 AGREE
    High level Qb


  31. papajoe2:

    Wife of the younger, large, gentleman said that she was from Christmas Island. Said that this Christmas Island was close to Australia/New Zealand area.


  32. kifi:

    #29 - There are lot more of those in New Zealand and Samoa, what used to be known as Western Samoa. Problem for these these kids is that they grow playing rugby but eventually get bypassed by the lighter kids in rugby as they get older. American football would be the perfect place for these 6-3 to 6-8, 275 to 350 pounders. You'd be surprised how many of them there are in New Zealand, Samoa, and Tonga. Give them three years to learn and play the game. Grayshirt, redshirt, and freshman year. Then turn them loose as sophmores. I met a young lad last year from Apia who was 6-9 380 pounds at seventeen years old. I don't think he was able to transfer his academics transcripts to a U.S. college.


  33. kifi:

    Awesome job by Coaches Naeole and Taamu.


  34. Stephen Tsai:

    PapaJoe:
    if you're on a boat with two 320-pound guys, it's best to go on the other side of the boat.
    Balance is everything.


  35. Kannakattack:

    I saw the new qbs throwing at Punahou yesterday... One blew the other out of the water. (You'd be surprised which one.) I've never seen anyone throw like that. He was throwing 45 yards like it was 20... He threw a 70+ yard bomb... very accurate the whole time I watched. NEGATIVES: Sloppy footwork (didn't effect velocity or accuracy but he doesn't get very deep on drops) He seemed quite a bit shorter than 6'2" though. ( I would say 6' MAYBE 6'1") huge chest and shoulders though. If he can get in the film room and knock off the rust from his mission, I bet he competes for the job day 1! I still hope we get Wittek or another BCS QB, but to be honest... I think this kid is the answer.


  36. kifi:

    #35 - The church mission or the military mission???


  37. kifi:

    #35 - Oh by the way, what are your specials today?


  38. jeezy33:

    33. I think it was a smart move sending 2 former professional linemen versus 1. Easier to sell with 2 guys and can build a stronger relationship getting to know 2 coaches. Wazzu has been hitting Samoa hard the past couple of years so building that relationship is going to be key.


  39. jeezy33:

    35. Which one? Reilly is 6-4 so not sure who the 6-2 kid you are referring to is??? Is there another QB I am not aware of?


  40. jeezy33:

    6-1*


  41. kifi:

    #39 - The walk on military guy from the state of Washington?


  42. PONO:

    Looks like Gib and his program are getting more heat than expected by the NCAA. By his account this definitely is NOT "nothing".


  43. Kannakattack:

    Oh military... My bad! I thought he was another mission kid... Two loco mocos down kifi!!!


  44. Stretch:

    #34 - ST, are you saying that PapaJoe is equal to the 2 each 320# guys? WOW....


  45. WarriorMojo:

    #34

    I don't know Papa Joe, but are you saying he can single-handedly, counterbalance two 320 pounders?

    Would seem to make more sense to tell one of the 320 pounders to stand on the other side.

    Or if not "tell", then "ask" very nicely.


  46. WarriorMojo:

    #44

    Ah, you beat me!


  47. Da Punchbowl Kid:

    Good Morning Gangeez! ;)

    Like the looks of the 2015 recruits, hope we can keep them all. Especially like the big guys.

    Whatever folks want to say about the O-line, I know we're in good hands with Coach Naeole. He's got the kids playing better and better and he is a great recruiter. We are lucky to have him.

    Kanakattack's post about the QBs has me even more excited... thanks for the post kanak!


  48. Da Punchbowl Kid:

    And very Happy Birthday to the statistical Wonder Woman, JM1111!


  49. Stephen Tsai:

    When I went to Pro Day, I took a Vomit Comet from SFO to SD. They made three people and two carry-ons move to one side. We're all thinking: Why don't they ask two lard-asses to sit across from each other?


  50. Stephen Tsai:

    PapaJoe's in fighting shape. It would take PapaJoe and three others to balance out the big guys.


  51. jeezy33:

    47. Honestly, he me more worried than excited... But I wouldn't put too much stock into QBs throwing in shorts with no defenders around..


  52. Kannakattack:

    No problem DPK... Has anyone heard when Summer Camp starts?!? I can't wait to see the recruits from the 2014 class!!!


  53. Stephen Tsai:

    WarriorMojo:
    You would have beaten Stretch except your writ was too long-written.


  54. papajoe2:

    I wasn't before the cruise. After? Well........... :)


  55. maddog50:

    Nice prospect by Coach N.....keep em coming.


  56. papajoe2:

    Actually, the older of the 2 was actually larger in weight (380? 400?) but smaller in height. Maybe 6'4 3/4".


  57. Da Punchbowl Kid:

    I got ya kannak... ;). But hey, that's just the way I roll.

    And I'd much rather read about QBs in shorts throwing well and showing potential than reading that they looked awful. And a former Navy Seal is not a bad candidate for a Warrior field general.

    BTW - Just Googled that certain eatery. I am soooo there!


  58. SteveM:

    Good morning everyone!

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY JM2375 !!!

    papajoe2 -- you could point out that a cruise ship has a unlimited meal training table... :-)


  59. Stephen Tsai:

    It appears that Chris Naeole and Ed Ta‘amu might be able to pull off another recruit before leaving tomorrow.


  60. kifi:

    #59 - No, no, no ST. Don't jinx it. Shhhhhhh. There is no more news to report from American Samoa. Not at this time.


  61. kifi:

    Oh, and by the way, Wittek is definitely not coming to Hawaii.


  62. markazulu:

    In unrelated news Wahiawa Central Pacific Bank just got robbed.


  63. Former UH Athlete:

    Nice commit... Like any early commit, gotta hold on tight to make sure they actually put ink to paper in February.


  64. Kannakattack:

    Yeah I have to agree with DPK... Somehow I've got to believe a special forces solider can handle pressure. Lol. But I'm telling you guys, I've been to my fair share of pro bowls and I'm still saying... This soldier is on that level as far as arm talent. But as Jamarcus Russell showed us... Talent doesn't mean anything. You have to have it between the ears!

    Kifi::: why do you say that? As much as I like this kid... He's never taken a college snap. IMHO we need wittek whether it's to add depth or to bring in other recruits. He's crucial.


  65. A-House:

    happy birthday to me
    happy birthday to you
    happy birthday to JM to tree sabon pie
    happy birthday to you

    all the monkies in the zoo
    look exactly like you - nah, not really
    happy birthday to you!!!!!


  66. jeezy33:

    57. Basically said the QB who is on scholarship didn't look very good... And that's the QB were hoping to push for PT soon...


  67. A-House:

    committed recruits are like sand.

    the harder you squeeze, the faster you lose them?

    nah, the principle behind the above is " power is like sand; the tighter you squeeze, the faster you lose it" ( from historical Korean drama named Jumong )


  68. markazulu:

    @64 I think he said Wittek isn't coming here because he visited texas 3 times already. But I think it was said hawaii is in the top 3 which is all that matters.


  69. st. anthony trojan:

    # 62...hope bj's mask was on tight....he he he is that inappropriate or can make joke ?


  70. SteveM:

    I see the the Star-Advertiser breaking news that David Lassner is one of the two final candidates for UH President. I do not know where he stands on UH sports, but I remember him for helping everyone, keeping his promises, and leading without micro-managing. I hope he's selected.


  71. Turkey:

    Very excited over Eric Prater. I think very similar upside to Kirkwood as each were stars in another sport in high school before only playing and starring their Sr. years. I love these multi sport athletes because their skills in other sports obviously translate over. Not saying all hard throwing, accurate pitchers make good QBs but it's definitely sounding like Prater's 92 mph fastball and ball control translates over to his football throwing abilities. Chow and Wynn gotta get 'em making the right decisions as we have some serious weapons to get the ball to this year.


  72. Turkey:

    In recent years, I often remember having a man open down field with Mo or Schroeder not able to reach em consistently. I figure If we're gonna have Kirkwood open 60 yards downfield every play, it'd be nice to have someone that's finally able to hit em.


  73. jeezy33:

    Ok... I think people need to slow down... Yeah its nice to see a guy with a strong arm sling it to WRs with no pads on, no pass rush, no playbook, and no DBs covering anyone... But lets be real... Thats not football... If he were trying out for a baseball and had a cannon, then I'd be excited... These are his high school stats... Would you honestly get excited over these stats knowing he hasn't even played football in 5 years?

    Year Grade Team GP Comp Att Yds Comp % Avg Y/G TD Int Lng QB Rate
    Varsity Totals 16 73 156 1050 .468 14.384 65.6 6 5 50 69
    08-09 Senior Varsity 11 69 147 996 .469 14.435 90.5 6 4 50 72
    07-08 Junior Varsity 5 4 9 54 .444 13.500 10.8 0 1 24 25


  74. Da Punchbowl Kid:

    jeezy -

    Time will tell the tale of the QB situation. We'll all be waiting for fall to see how it plays out. We just need to have the best guy out there.


  75. Turkey:

    The fact that Chow turned Schroeder into a pretty good QB gives me hope. Especially with Schroeder's lack of a gun. I do completely see your point on it being night and day with pads on. But hey, after a 1-11 season all one can do is have faith that we're gonna be better.


  76. st. anthony trojan:

    #73....stats is good for thr statiction...but if during warm ups...n me was coach...i would have him uncork a few...weather he was starting or not...sm sure opposing coaches...


  77. st. anthony trojan:

    oops got sent before me finish...he he...continue...n db's n safeties....would take notice...tsaiko warfare maybe...


  78. kifi:

    #64 - Every prediction that I make ends up being wrong.


  79. gobows:

    here's some useless information…seattle moving to institute $15 minimum wage

    http://www.kgoradio.com/common/page.php?pt=Seattle+to+Usher+In+$15+Minimum+Wage&id=76404&is_corp=0


  80. st. anthony trojan:

    For me pads ....n running around hills or jungle with a 40 or 50 pound load...should
    equate to some skills...especially if live bullets are whizzing by you...

    Me i would cut him mucho slack...till he is under 'fire' on the football field n see
    if he can prove himself...

    Obviously the coaches think he deserves a chance...lets hope they are right..


  81. Andrew:

    79.

    15.00/hr is pretty ridiculous for minimum wage.


  82. gobows:

    81

    hawaii will be at $10 in a few years…there goes the dollar menu at mcdonalds


  83. boolakanaka:

    51--Jeezy, tru dat. Before I transfered back home, I played with a guy that was 1st team parade all-american. Passed all the "look tests"; 6'4, 220, threw to this day, the prettiest ball I ever saw--but it actually had too much rotation, but just a perfect spiral, and on 7 on 7, would just spin it like he was playing darts.

    Come to put on pads, poor bruddha, was the equivalent of the boxer with a glass jaw. He heard footsteps, when the hot dog stand was getting set-up. Could not pull the trigger, and all his skills were for naught. Many a coach, saw him and thought they could bring out the talent, dude, went to three D1 programs, and another NAIA school--never started.


  84. st. anthony trojan:

    Guess where you live makes a very big difference....here in Manila if you made 15 bucks a day...you be in Hog Heaven.....15 bucks a week here is ok for most...but extremely hard to live on if you have family.


  85. jeezy33:

    83. And I'm not trying to knock anyone... Just saying nothing at this point is worth getting excited over... Lot of unproven options and based on last season and multiple practice reports I've followed from different sources, it seems like we need more competition at the QB spot....


  86. Turkey:

    I agree, completely different animal when the pads come on. It's why some teams absolutely tear up a pass league and then fall into obscurity during the season. The pads, pass rush, and hits add several pretty fearsome (for some) elements. I read a NW index article a while back hyping Prater stating that "he's the type of individual you build teams around." Me hoping these words hold some weight, on top of the fact that someone posted here about him today, riled up some excitement. Hopefully we end up with the competition we need at all positions by summer. As I recall even JJ Winston was fighting for his job up until game day last year. Competition is what will separate the ones who have it from the ones who pressure out.


  87. Andrew:

    85.

    I'm anxious to find out who the other D1 QBs that are interested in transferring to UH are. Yup, the more the competition @ QB the better.


  88. Shoko:

    That's increases over the next seven years to reach $15. So, presently it's $9.32 per hour in Washington state with an 81 cent increase over the next 7 years.

    Probably going to need it when gas prices reaches $7.00 a gallon in the year 2021.


  89. ai-eee-soos:

    by ST: Quarterbacks Woolsey, Higgins top UH depth chart; Graham 3rd.

    only QB's mentioned.

    http://www.staradvertiser.com/news/breaking/20140501_quarterbacks_woolsey_higgins_top_uh_depth_chart.html?id=257592761


  90. st. anthony trojan:

    No hu hu #85....just saying...he has to prove....me agree...i just think his maturity n military
    experience bring so much more competition to that position...

    It will be positive experience for ALL competitors...hope it rubs off some of the other positions...to show our strengths n weakness overall team wise.

    Some times a single person can change a 'team climate' n not necessary for them to start...but it the talent is there...he can be used on special teams etc.

    Good discussion today...definitely much more positive 2 day then UHAD n their short comings...the past few days...

    Will keep us at the edge of our seats...waiting for August to roll around...thanks ur insight...
    IMUA WARRIORS...


  91. Andrew:

    89.

    That worries me. I'm sure they're right Woolsey and Higgins have much improved but I'm still not fully confident they will be game time ready when it's August against UW. They may look great in practice but it's completely different when there's anothe team on the other side of scrimmage. I hope I'm wrong of course.


  92. Shoko:

    I thought Chow wasn't going to announce a quarterback depth chart as to keep the competition open up leading to Fall camp.


  93. A-House:

    minimum pay:

    several states, including Hawaii and several Republican controlled legislature and govs, are pushing for minimum pay increases

    except the US Senate which rejected Pres Obama minimum pay raise proposal - needed 60 votes to pass , but only 56 voted "aye"

    how will this play out in 2014 mid-term elections?


  94. A-House:

    shoko:

    I thought Chow would not name a #1 QB until fall practices - is this different than putting names on a depth chart?


  95. Shoko:

    94. That's what I thought I heard Chow saying before Spring practice started. Guess I was wrong about that. No biggie, though, its sounds like Graham might be riding the pine this season if he stay third on the Fall depth chart.


  96. Turkey:

    Yup we're just waiting for that leader. Last year you could kind of see how it always seemed to light a fire under our guys whenever Schroeder went in. It was almost night and day how much harder the guys seemed to play. Just speculation but I thought it was due to unspoken respect Schroeder earned from the team through the licks he took the previous season and the way his starting position was reappointed the next. Love how the competition is wide open this year as we all remember how last year's plan worked. Although, I do still have a lot of faith in Graham. I'm hoping with no hype at all, Graham will finally be able to do his thing.


  97. al:

    68...actually hawaii is not in the top three for wittek. we are in the top two! only two left.


  98. Andrew:

    96.

    Hopefully though this year they start of with good momentum and don't only wake up and turn it on in the 2nd half of the season like last year.


  99. al:

    ...and so today i have a second offer of lunch if wittek is a warrior.
    hey, nice ring to it,"wittek the warrior"!


  100. Shoko:

    I remember Oregon, after 2012 Spring practice, Chip Kelly said he wasn't going to name a number one until after Falll camp. Bryan Bennett had a overall good spring practice and was expected to be the starter that season, but it was Marcus Mariota who had an outstanding spring scrimmage and ended up taking the starting spot from Bennett. Bennet ended up transferring after that season to some FCS school in Louisiana, if not mistaken.

    It seems Woolsey had a better spring practice with Higgins having a better performance during the Spring Fling.


  101. st. anthony trojan:

    Where is TM when we need him...lets puka 100....?


  102. Turkey:

    We have so many threats at receiver and RB this year I feel like all we really need to do is get em the ball. I still remember Chow's first year when we really only had Harding, Miah, and Billy-Ray to work with and our main scoring threat was Mike Edwards.


  103. al:

    congratulations to cameron higgins on being named the new kaiser hs football head coach!


  104. gobows:

    wahine invade 'bama

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d787pVR7634


  105. gobows:

    beeman inks a pair of bigs…6-4 rachel morris salt lake cc, 6-3 brianna kennedy loyola marymount.

    http://hawaiiathletics.com/news/2014/5/1/WBB_0501142632.aspx?path=wbball


  106. Rodney:

    Warriors for Whittek!!!!!
    I think he's comming, just a feeling.


  107. lonomakana:

    All Chow said was he wasn't going to name a starter.


  108. gobows:

    gavin smith declared dead…

    http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-missing-fox-executive-dead-20140501,0,1487861.story#axzz30WnCVVls


  109. A-House:

    al:

    can I join the band wagon on Wittek NOT coming to UH?

    I like go lunch when you are paying!

    Besides, my conscious bothering me about losing my bet to you and will pay you the $$$.


  110. jeezy33:

    91. Huge concern considering the coaches wanted Woolsey to grasp the job and gave him every opportunity to.


  111. el burro sabio:

    Ok so he released a depth chart, bus' em out!


  112. Andrew:

    110.

    Agreed.


  113. al:

    subliminal messages abound. come on guys read in between the lines.

    1. a depth chart is not naming the starters.
    2. naming two guys to share a position on the depth chart is akin to kissing your sister on the lips.
    3. a depth chart needs to be made for the team's benefit.

    some wise coach in his post spring depth chart called them starting points.


  114. al:

    i am sure there will be many ties on the depth chart.


  115. al:

    106...although not yet a household name. his name is spelled W-i-t-t-e-k. no "h" in the surname.


  116. al:

    ...and its "Max", just one "x".


  117. kev-1:

    Is it pronounced "wi" (like with) or "why" ttek???


  118. kev-1:

    The NCAA is smart the way they go after a program during an investigation. Interview the guys that have been released and are disgruntled (or at least dissatisfied) with the coach and get all the dirt. I can just imagine the singing that was coming out of a couple of former players' mouths. Probably makes the investigation a lot easier.


  119. kev-1:

    Kinda like calling an ex-girlfriend to ask about what kind of guy he was. You end up finding out more dirt than you even asked about in the first place. "And you know what else he did?"


  120. ai-eee-soos:

    Your comment is awaiting moderation?


  121. ai-eee-soos:

    Nevada is extremely young on offense, especially with its reserves. Of the 22 offensive players on the two deep, seven are freshmen and six are sophomores.

    *** The offensive line, in particular, cannot afford injuries given its youth and

    lack of depth. ***


  122. ai-eee-soos:

    geev um


  123. ai-eee-soos:

    thin at receiver


  124. ai-eee-soos:

    and offensive line


  125. ai-eee-soos:

    also safety


  126. al:

    i wish i was thin....:(


  127. ai-eee-soos:

    Your comment is awaiting moderation -

    then got deleted - from 120 on

    dunno why


  128. ai-eee-soos:

    read em now, before get deleted


  129. maddog50:

    Like the depth at LB and look forward to Benny F making an contribution. Also like Wa'a in the line-up.....looking forward to Lefotu having a great year....Go Warriors