By Stephen Tsai
The paper work is being processed, and running back Dominique Small is expected to soon join the Warriors. The goal is for Small to gain admission for the July 7 start of Summer Session II. Here's what the signing means:
> Filling voids: The search for a running back began about a month ago when Aofaga Wily started to consider retirement because of medical issues stemming from a concussion suffered last September. In addition to losing Wily, walk-on Max Broman will not return because of financial reasons. Also, 2014 signee D.J. Riggins, who is recovering from shoulder surgery, will delay enrolling at UH until January.
> Cliff notes: Two decades ago, the UH basketball team recruited a post player with pedestrian stats. But Cliff Beaubrun turned out to be a menacing shot-blocker with an accurate short-to-mid-range jumper. Small, like Beaubrun, is viewed as a talented player who had limited opportunities in junior college. Small played in a rotation in which he carried only 29 times in 2013 (but for an average of 8.1 yards per rush). His first-step quickness and extra-gear speed were evident on video. What sealed the deal was a recommendation from Cerritos coach Frank Mazzotta, a trusted ally of the Warriors. Mazzotta promised Small would be one of the fastest players on the Warriors' roster. Twice during a session at Cerritos, Small was hand-timed at 4.4 seconds over 40 yards. He also is a sure-handed receiver, a must in UH's offense.
> Videos: Small highlights
> Backfield in motion: It appears that Keelan Ewaliko, who played nickelback and safety in spring training, will get a shot at running back this coming training camp. Ewaliko, who redshirted last year, was a star quarterback at Baldwin High and rodeo champion.