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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

WitP: Greg Salas

Lots of reports from Senior Bowl practices, some bad but mostly good.

New York Times:
There’s a lot to like about Salas, and he had a solid performance in front of scouts. He does a good job of sinking his hips when changing direction, and really sells route fakes to defensive backs. Salas has good ball tracking ability and can find the ball high in the air on deep passes. His entire game is built on quickness: releases from the line; setting up routes; breaking on the ball and getting up field after the catch.
Greg Salas of Hawaii also had a good day. Salas caught everything with his hands early — contrary to a questionable report that I saw earlier in the week. Salas won every one of his one-on-one battles, even juking Shareece Wright out of his shoes on the final rep of practice.
The Finsiders:
Also, at the wide receiver position Greg Salas, a 6’2” 210 pound target of Hawaii caught my eye. Salas showed flashes that he can stretch the field either on the outside or in the slot.
Salas shook off a couple of early drops to finish practice strongly. "You just have to have a short memory, especially at receiver," he said. "You know you're going to get more than one shot out here, and I'm just looking forward to my next one. I'm just going to do the best I can to get open and try to gain the confidence of the quarterback."
Real GM:
Hawaii’s Greg Salas doesn’t show a lot of wiggle but he has strong hands and decent speed. He ran a sluggo route that left Curtis Brown (Texas corner not having a good week) flailing, then tracked a good throw from Greg McElroy for a touchdown.
WR Greg Salas from Hawaii is coming off of back to back 100 catch seasons and it showed on Tuesday. Salas (6’1″ 206) is a smooth route runner and gained consistent separation throughout the session including a 42-yard hookup with Greg McElroy for a touchdown during 11-on-11. Salas had about 8 receptions in the practice and had the South Team QBs looking for him series to series.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Jared Leaf Commits to UH

Stephen Tsai writes that running back Jared Leaf will become a Warrior.
Leaf said he is 6 feet 2 and 230 pounds.

In nine regular-season games in 2010, Leaf rushed for 1,347 yards and 19 touchdowns. Against El Molino High, he rushed for 334 yards and five touchdowns.

He was named to the 2010 Diablo Foothill Athletic League's first team as a running back and linebacker.

Leaf will compete for the running back's job vacated by Alex Green, who completed his UH football eligibility last month.
Congrats to Jared!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Four players commit to UH

Stephen Tsai writes about four players who will become Warriors.
» Tavita Woodward, a defensive end/linebacker from Eastern Arizona,

» Kendrick Van Ackeren, a safety from Bellevue High who was named the Seattle Times' 3A Washington state defensive player of the year,

» Chinedu Amadi, a slotback from Chino (Calif.) High who goes by his middle name, Promise, and

» Justin Vele, an all-state linebacker from Farrington High. Vele told the coaches he made a "soft commitment," and will solidify it Feb. 2, the first day recruits can sign national letters of intent.
Congrats to all!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

WitP: Alex Green

Chawan Cut is back! He compiles the local Shrine Game news, which has some Alex Green highlights.

Despite some of the bad reviews Green got, mainly due to his fumbles, he also impressed some folks.

National Football Post:
Four players who helped their stock were Mount Union wide receiver Cecil Shorts (made quick breaks and showed good hands), Hawaii running back Alex Green (displayed a nice combination of power and burst, and he looks versatile), Buffalo cornerback Josh Thomas (showed quick feet), and Boise State cornerback Brandyn Thompson (displayed ball skills).
NFL Draft Bible:
Hawaii’s Alex Green was a true revelation for those watching him for the first time. Outside of an ill-advised fumble on the opening drive, the 6’0”, 220-pound bruiser proved to be a load to handle for opposing defenders.

Green had a few five and six-yard runs straight up the gut. However, he was truly outstanding on a 3rd-and-2 handoff in which he ran behind his pads to gain the necessary yardage, but then lowered his shoulder to drive his opponents back to gain a little extra.

The former Rainbow also showcased a decent set of hands by coming back to an underthrown Scott Tolzien pass in the first quarter.
Alex Green, Hawaii’s two time 1000 yard tailback (sic), fumbled on the opening snap for the West, but showed better hands in the passing game. He ran with power in between the tackles, showcasing his 220+ pound frame.

Greg Salas 2010 Highlights

Kapoleicoug does it again, putting together this great video of Greg Salas' 2010 highlights:

Friday, January 21, 2011

WitP: Pisa, Sopoaga, Estes, Green

Pisa Tinoisamoa was held out of practice yesterday as he continues to deal with knee problems that have plagued him for much of the season.

Vaughn McClure of the Chicago Tribune writes about what Pisa brings to the Chicago defense.
"All I know is the first lead that they ran, Pisa smacked the fullback three yards in the backfield,'' Urlacher said of teammate Pisa Tinoisamoa. "That kind of set the tone for our run defense the rest of the game.''

Tinoisamoa, who returned to the starting lineup last week for the first time since having his right knee scoped Dec. 3, didn't play a lot of snaps against the Seahawks. The Bears played a lot of nickel defense, which pulls Tinoisamoa off the field. But he tried to be disruptive when on it.
"Pisa is down hill and he plays fast,'' Urlacher said. "I love it.''
Isaac Sopoaga was inducted into the College of the Canyons Athletic Hall of Fame yesterday.

Although John Estes spent last year on injured reserve, the Jaguars are excited about his potential, according to Jaguars.com's Vic Ketchman.
Vic Ketchman: I could tell from talking with Andy that he really likes John Estes. He's a "jar on the shelf" candidate. The tackles, Kevin Haslam and Daniel Baldridge, are highly regarded by the Jaguars and Andy gushed about Brad Vierling. Those are four legitimate jar-type players.
According to BloggingtheBoys.com, the Cowboys have been talking to Alex Green, who is practicing for the East-West Shrine Game.

BigCatCountry.com has a quick report on Green from the Shrine practices.
At the running back position, Hawaii's Alex Green has been impressive. He's quick with good size and catches the football really well.
CBSSports.com has a report on Green.
The West team's top skill-position player was Hawaii running back Alex Green. He caught the ball well and showed a bit more burst and elusiveness than expected.
And Michael Schottey has one more.
The best run in 11-on-11 was by Alex Green (RB Hawaii), who ran off tackle to the left side, squeezing between a couple of poor blocks, attacking the hole and planting out of it to evade the defender. If he can continue to be that decisive, he can contribute for an NFL team.

Coach Chris Tormey, DB Lewis Walker Leaving UH

Stephen Tsai writes that special teams/safeties coach Chris Tormey is leaving UH to join Washington State.
The move makes sense for Tormey, who was raised in the Northwest and played and coached at the University of Idaho, which is located 8 miles from WSU's Pullman campus.

Tormey was a point recruiter in the Northwest. Although he leaves for the Mainland Sunday, he still will assist the Warriors in recruiting prospects from Washington.
And yesterday Tsai reported that defensive back Lewis Walker is transferring to Utah.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Ijumaa Armstrong commits to UH

Stephen Tsai writes that defensive back Ijumaa Armstrong will become a Warrior.
"I just love it out there - the coaches, the people, the atmosphere, everything," said Armstrong, who completed his UH visit Sunday. "The coaches are very welcoming. You feel you're part of something special down there."

He said he is being recruited by Oregon State, UCLA, Fresno State and Idaho.
Armstrong said he is 5 feet 11 and 180 pounds. He said he ran 40 yards in 4.48 seconds during a Culver City combine, and is capable of bench-pressing 275 pounds.

He played receiver and cornerback at Culver City, but projects to compete at cornerback, safety or quarter (nickelback) for the Warriors.
Congrats to Ijumaa! Here's a highlight vid:

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Warriors in the Pros

Some WitP news from the last few weeks:

Pisa Tinoisamoa made one tackle as the Bears beat the Seahawks for a berth in the NFC Championship Game.

Mat McBriar is going to the Pro Bowl.
McBriar earned his second career Pro Bowl nod. His first was in 2006.

"It's an awesome feeling,'' McBriar said. "I was very happy when I got the call. It's extra special for me since I went to school there, and I get to catch up with some of the people I went to school with. The first time was a really neat experience, I'm going to make the most of it again."
He will also be an analyst for ESPN Australia.
"Nothing crazy," said McBriar, who is from Australia. "I'm more like a sideline guy. I'll be here for the Super Bowl week. It will be some of the lighter stuff. Australians really don't take the game that seriously. I'm not going to talk X's and O's. I'll talk like, 'This guy is really good. Watch him catch the ball.' That kind of thing. It should be fun. It was an opportunity that was presented to me and I was like this may never happen again."
In his final game of the season, Davone Bess had an amazing touchdown catch:

MiamiDolphins.com had a profile of Bess.
“He’s grown a lot as a football player and understanding the game,” said running back Ronnie Brown, who is considered to be one of the better pass-catching backs in the league. “I think that’s what sets a lot of guys apart, when they continue to learn and he continues to have that same type of motivation when he comes in. He has that same work ethic and he hasn’t been one of those guys that got complacent.
Jake Ingram signed a futures contract with Tennessee.

Chad Owens is negotiating with the New York Jets.

Jenny Vrentas of the Star-Ledger profiled Jet Wayne Hunter.
“A lot of times you need a new start to do well,” said Hunter, who was out of the NFL for a year before the Jets gave him a chance. “I was forced into being away from football, and I think that really helped, because I got to reset my mind.”


And we're back! Sorry for the extended hiatus. I should've said something rather than just dropping it abruptly, but all kinds of things happened after Christmas and only now am I settling back in. I hope. And I won't lie, I was a little habut about the game. Anyway, here's some of what's happened in the last few weeks:

Defensive back Brian Clay Jr. commits to UH.
"Hawaii is going to win a lot of games," Clay said. "It's going in the right direction. I want to be a part of that."

Clay said he is 6 feet 1, 185 pounds, and can run 40 yards in 4.59 seconds. He is projected to compete as a cornerback and on special teams. Scouts liken Clay to UH freshman John Hardy-Tuliau. Clay will put his commitment in writing Feb. 2, the first day recruits may sign binding national letters of intent.

He will turn down offers from Army, Air Force, Colorado State, San Diego State, Nevada-Las Vegas, San Jose State and Utah State.
Also from that article, Stephen Tsai writes that Laupepa Letuli and Alex Green will play in the East-West Shrine Game.

Tsai writes that Greg Salas, Kealoha Pilares and Alex Green will be invited to the NFL Combine. Tsai has two other articles about Salas, Green and Letuli signing with agents and training for the games and workouts.

KFVE has a story about the players preparing for the combine.

OCVarsity.com has an article about recent UH commit Thomas Olds.
“I really like (Aloha Stadium). It’s just sick,” he said. “Obviously, the weather is beautiful. … But it was the attitudes of everyone who lives there. It’s really cool.

“You’re walking down the street and everyone has has a smile on. Everyone drives real slow and no one is trying to push you off the road.”
If the Mountain West Conference expands to twelve teams in the future, Ferd Lewis writes that they would most likely add teams from Texas.

Ferd writes that the travel "cost sharing" UH will pay to visiting MWC and Big West teams may top $1 million a year.
But they estimate that costs could be balanced out by a combination of savings in UH's travel as well as improved rights fees and ticket sales.

"It could be a wash," said Jim Donovan, UH athletic director.

Terms call for UH to pay a maximum of $150,000-$175,000 for each of the four MWC football opponents who come to Aloha Stadium, depending upon which time zones they come from.

Meanwhile, UH will pay approximately $500 per person for Big West teams in men's and women's basketball, baseball, softball, women's volleyball, soccer and water polo and other sports to come here.
The Star-Advertiser has an editorial about that subject titled, Travel costs can reap rewards

Lewis interviewed MWC commissioner Craig Thompson. They also discussed the MWC's BCS dreams.

Dave Reardon reminds us that, despite all the criticism he's gotten, WAC commissioner Karl Benson is a good guy.

The Warriors also got some good guys.
The five Warrior players, Kenny Estes, Siasau Matagiese, Jett Jasper, Meatoga and Umu, spent part of their Thursday morning signing autographs, chatting, taking photos, and even helping with Bingo for residents of the Garden Isle Health Care and Rehabilitation Center at the G.N. Wilcox Memorial Hospital.
KHON has video of Bryant Moniz visiting a less-fortunate family prior to the Hawaii Bowl. Speaking of which...

Tulsa beats Hawaii 62-35 in Hawaii Bowl, by Doug Ferguson of the AP

Warrior turnovers trigger Hawai‘i Bowl loss, by Jaymes Song of the AP

Happy holiday, by Eric Bailey of Tulsa World

Tulsa finishes strong, by Bailey

TU Notebook: Big-time defense, by Bailey

Gift-wrapped, by Stephen Tsai
Moniz said Tulsa, switching between man schemes and a four-deep zone, defended the routes and not necessarily the receivers.

"They were on all of our routes," Moniz said. "They were cutting it. They knew our offense. They made some great plays. They were getting good pressure up front. They were jumping the lanes. I wasn't able to read them."
Luck runs out as injuries, errors plague Warriors, by Jason Kaneshiro

Warriors' turnovers bring full stop to exclamation point, by Ferd Lewis
An otherwise wonderful 10-win season that should have reached a record-tying 11 was besmirched at the end as six turnovers, ill-timed penalties, second-half defensive breakdowns and the loss of three players to postseason ineligibility that sent the remnants of a crowd of 41,089 into the night shaking their heads.
Unit strays from the formula, by Brian McInnis

Pregame talk motivated team, by Billy Hull

A loss like this could last an awfully long time, by Dave Reardon

Warriors Score & Notebook, by the Star-Advertiser

Five big plays from Hawaii's 62-35 loss to Tulsa, by Reardon

Pilares, Warriors regroup for future, by Tsai
The Warriors will have to replace three starting receivers (Pilares, Greg Salas and Rodney Bradley), two running backs (Alex Green and Chizzy Dimude), five key offensive linemen (Laupepa Letuli, Adrian Thomas, Bronson Tiwanak, Brysen "Bula" Ginlack and Kainoa LaCount), two defensive ends (Kamalu Umu and Elliott Purcell), four defensive backs (Spencer Smith, Lametrius Davis, Jeramy Bryant and Mana Silva), and a kicker (Scott Enos).
Considering an extension for McMackin is sensible, by Lewis
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