The Warrior Beat

The art of the deal

May 3rd, 2014

Eperone Moananu's commitment the other day was significant, and not just because the Warriors added a solid offensive tackle to their 2015 class. Here's the dealio:

> Rebuilding bridges: While the Warriors have focused on 30 Hawaii prospects for the 2015 class, they also wanted to re-establish ties in American Samoa and Australia. Moananu was the first step.

> To the top: If a team is going to make a splash, it's best to start in the deepest pond. Moananu's school — Tafuna High — is the two-time defending champion.

> Reunion: Washington State assistant coach Joe Salave‘a has an "in" with Tafuna. His brother Okland Salave‘a is Tafuna's head coach. UH line coach Chris Naeole has been friends with the Salave‘a family for several years. Naeole is now the Warriors' point recruiter in American Samoa.

> Naeole Effect: If you aspire a career in shuffleboard, it would mean a lot to be recruited by someone who played more than a decade in the top shuffleboard league in the world. (It's early and I have a cold, so shuffleboard is the best metaphor I could conjure.)

> Ta‘amu Effect: It also helped that Ed Ta‘amu, a UH coaching intern, was certified as a recruiter this spring.

> Flying Hawaiian: Sure,  these are austere times on Lower Campus Road. With the generosity of Hawaiian Airlines, the football coaching staff was able to pull off this trip. The Warriors made sure to save Hawaiian Airline passes for recruiting trips to American Samoa.

> First come, first served: The best way to travel to American Samoa is through Hawaii, and there are only two flights each week from Hawaii to American Samoa. The Warriors booked early, and managed to get a head start on Pac-12 teams that sent coaches to American Samoa this weekend.

* * * * *

Ninety more days until the start of training camp.

Does this video help: Hawaii Five-O

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