UH lands 16 players on National Signing Day

HONOLULU – University of Hawaii head football coach Norm Chow announced the Rainbow Warriors’ 2015 signing class Wednesday. Chow and his coaching staff secured commitments from 16 high school, junior college prospects and transfers, the university said in a press release.

The list does not include five other student-athletes who join the program for the 2015 season, including mid-year enrollees Dayton Furuta of Mililani High School, DJ Riggins of Oaks Christian High School in California, and Manly Williams of Farrington High School. Two other student-athletes Aaron Zwahlen (Modesto, California) and Gus Lavaka (Kearns, Utah) return from missions and will enroll during the fall.

“Overall we’re very pleased with this class,” Chow said. “We were able to fill the needs of our team and mix four-year transfers with junior college and freshmen.”

Among the 16 signees, eight are high school seniors, five are from junior colleges, and three are FBS transfers who are eligible to compete for the upcoming season. 

Among the transfers are quarterback Max Wittek, who sat out last season because of NCAA transfer rules after spending the first three years at USC. Linebacker Makani Kema-Kaleiwahea (formerly Keoni Bush-Loo) also sat out last season after two seasons at Arizona. Wide receiver Dylan Collie redshirted at BYU before serving a two-year church mission.

Also returning from a church mission is Sione Kauhi, an all-state tight end at Wilsonville High School in Oregon, who is currently enrolled at UH along with linebacker Russell Williams (Sacramento City College) and offensive lineman Matt Norman (Fullerton JC).

A total of nine student-athletes signed their National Letter of Intent on Wednesday, including four homegrown products – offensive lineman Jordan Agasiva of Division I state champion Mililani High School, safety Solomon Matautia of Campbell High School, punter Alexander Trifonovitch of Punahou School, and lineman Kamuela Borden of Division II state champion Iolani School. Agasiva and Matautia were consensus first-team all-state picks while Trifonovitch is a top punting prospect and Chris Sailer a first team all-American kicker.

Offensive line was among the team’s needs this year and the group added six signees, five of whom are 6-foot-4 or taller and three 300-pounders. Also signing with UH were J.R. Hensley (Edmond, Oklahoma), Eperone Moananu (Pago Pago, American Samoa), and Austin Webb (Dallas).

Junior college standouts Paul Harris (Ventura JC), Dejaun Butler (Santa Monica JC), and Melvin Davis (Santa Monica JC) also inked with the Rainbow Warriors out of California. Harris was a JUCO all-American kick returner with three returns for touchdowns last year at Ventura College. Butler and Davis helped SMC to consecutive conference titles.  

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