POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Dec 14, 2010
It would not be difficult to imagine Will Gregory filling the football cleats of Hawaii running back Alex Green.
But Gregory, a senior at Dominguez High School, aspires to one day becoming the next Alex Green, the Warriors' All-Western Athletic Conference running back.
Green, a senior, completes his UH eligibility after the Dec. 24 Sheraton Hawaii Bowl.
Gregory has accepted a football scholarship from the Warriors. He said he will put his pledge in writing Feb. 2, the first day recruits can sign a binding national letter of intent, and begin taking UH classes in July.
"I think it's a great school for me," Gregory said. "I knew for a long, long time I wanted to go to Hawaii."
Gregory's great-uncle is George Lumpkin, the Warriors' director of player personnel who has spent 37 seasons as a UH player and coach.
"He's always talking to me about school," Gregory said. "He doesn't talk to me about football."
Although Lumpkin coordinates the Warriors' recruiting, Gregory said he was contacted by Brian Smith, who coaches UH's running backs.
"He's a good guy," Gregory said of Smith. "He came to my house. My family likes him, too."
Gregory said he is 6 feet, about 200 pounds, and is capable of running 40 yards in less than 4.5 seconds.
Yesterday, he was named to the California Interscholastic Federation all-star team.
Gregory said Arizona, California and Washington have been trying to recruit him as a defensive back. But he said he will compete at running back for the Warriors.
"I like DB," Gregory said, "but I love running back."
Gregory missed Dominguez's first five games this season because of a high-ankle sprain. But in seven games, he rushed for 12 touchdowns and more than 700 yards.
He said he received scholarship offers from Boise State, Nevada and San Diego State. But he told the UH coaches he will sign with the Warriors.
"I like their offense a lot," Gregory said. "And I like what they do with their running back."
After the Hawaii Bowl, the Warriors will be losing Green and senior back Chizzy Dimude.
Two freshmen who are redshirting -- Joey Iosefa and John Lister -- are the only returning running backs on scholarship.
Sterling Jackson, a walk-on who is redshirting, has played well on scout teams and is expected to compete for playing time next season.
At least two other Warriors could be competing for playing time at running back next season. Hogan Rosehill is recovering from a torn ACL, and Jordan Monico has been a top tackler on the kickoff unit.