POSTED: 1:30 a.m. HST, Feb 1, 2011
In an effort to boost its defense, the Hawaii football team has secured commitments from a defensive end from a California junior college and an outside linebacker from American Samoa.
Craig Cofer, who played under former UH defensive tackle Lui Fuga at San Diego's Grossmont College, said he will sign a letter of intent with the Warriors tomorrow, the first day football recruits may put their commitments in writing.
Cofer's pledge comes a few days after Penitito Faalologo, a senior at Fagaitua High, accepted a football scholarship from the Warriors.
Cofer completed his 48-hour UH recruiting trip on Sunday.
"I love the weather, and the beach, and the family aspect," Cofer said.
In addition to surfing and touring Waikiki, Cofer attended Saturday's basketball game, in which a future football teammate provided an emotional spark.
"Miah (Ostrowski) played his heart out," Cofer said. "That was cool."
Cofer is 6 feet 5 and 250 pounds. He said he is capable of bench pressing 225 pounds 21 times and 275 pounds 13 times. He can run 40 yards in 4.7 seconds.
Cofer, who was raised in the Bay Area, attended Southern Oregon as a freshman in 2009. He redshirted that year, then opted for a change of scenery, transferring to Grossmont.
It was there where he was mentored by Fuga, whom he described as "one of my best friends."
Cofer said he received scholarship offers from every Western Athletic Conference school. He narrowed his choices to Nevada and UH.
"I kind of wanted to get out of my comfort zone," Cofer said of his decision to pick Hawaii. "I want to take that experience and learn from the culture."
Faalologo will sign with UH tomorrow morning, then play in the U.S. vs. The World all-star game in Austin, Texas, that night, according to his coach, Pooch Taase.
Taase said Faalologo is 6 feet 1, 220 pounds, and can run 40 yards in under 4.7 seconds.
Faalologo had received a scholarship offer from Arizona, but chose UH because of its football program, his admiration of head coach Greg McMackin and assistant coach Tony Tuioti, and the comparative proximity to American Samoa.
"He's one plane ride away from home," Taase said.
Taase said Faalologo is projected to compete at outside linebacker, with the possibility of sliding down to defensive end.