Semisi Uluave provided the surprise of the Pacific Islands Athletic Alliance national letter of intent signing day ceremonies this morning committing to the University of California Berkeley.
Uluave, an all-State offensive lineman from Punahou School, had been heavily recruited by more than a dozen schools including Oregon, UCLA and Texas Tech.
Uluave took a deep breath, and signed with Cal. Then, he reached into a plastic bag and pulled on a Cal cap in ceremonies at the Sheraton Waikiki.
The 6-foot, 6-inch, 315-pound Uluave, said, he arrived at his decision Monday and reaffirmed it Tuesday night. “I’ve been saying a lot of prayers lately,” Uluave said.
He was rated a four-star prospect by several national national recruiting services.
Punahou receiver Kanawai Noa also committed to Cal.
Oregon, as expected, was a big winner with three commitments: defensive end Canton Kaumatule (Punahou), defensive tackle Rex Manu (Mililani) and defensive back Dylan Kane (Kamehameha). Kaumatule is already enrolled at Oregon.
In addition Matt Mariota, younger brother of Heisman Trophy winner Marcus, committed to the Ducks.
Meanwhile, as of mid-morning, nine University of Hawaii football recruits signed letters of intent.
Five Kahuku senior football players signed with the teams they had earlier orally committed to on Wednesday morning during a school-wide assembly in the gym.
Defensive lineman/running back Salanoa-Alo Wily and linebacker Soli Afalava made good on their one-day old commitments to University of Nevada-Las Vegas by signing their letters of intent to the Rebels.
Previously, Afalava had been a solid Hawaii commit, while Wily had originally committed to Hawaii and then to UNLV and then became undecided. Both made their final decisions Tuesday.
Cornerback Alohi Gilman sent his letter of intent to Navy and quarterback Tuli Wily-Matagi honored his commitment to Oregon State as a tight end.
Defensive lineman and fullback Pena Fitisemanu signed as a preferred walk-on with Utah.
Afalava will likely play strong safety for UNLV, and Fitisemanu may move to linebacker and play some fullback for the Utes.
Star-Advertiser TOP 20
(Where the top local college football prospects have signed)
Rank Player Pos. Ht. Wt. School College
1. Canton Kaumatule DE 6-7 290 Punahou Oregon
2. Fred Ulu-Perry OL 6-2 295 Saint Louis UCLA
3. Semisi Uluave OL 6-6 315 Punahou Cal
4. Mika Tafua DE 6-4 238 Kamehameha BYU
5. Rex Manu DT 6-2 290 Mililani Oregon
6. Breiden Fehoko DT 6-3 286 Farrington Texas Tech
7. Dylan Kane DB 6-3 195 Kamehmameha Oregon
8. Kanawai Noa WR 6-1 185 Punahou Cal
9. Jordan Agasiva OL 6-3 290 Mililani UH
10. Tuli Wily-Matagi TE/DL 6-3 220 Kahuku Oregon St.
11. Solomon Matautia LB 6-2 215 Campbell UH
12. Salanoa-Alo Wily DT 6-1 270 Kahuku UNLV
13. Lyle Tuiloma OL 6-3 284 Nanakuli Colorado
14. Ronley Lakalaka LB 6-1 220 Punahou San Diego St.
15. Viliamu Auwae OL 6-6 275 Kapolei Utah State
16. Abiel Taito DB 6-2 200 Campbell ??
17. Kamuela Borden OL/DL 6-3 240 ‘Iolani UH
18. Soli Afalava DB 6-2 201 Kahuku UNLV
19. Ronald Matautia LB 5-11 205 Kapolei ??
20. Alohi Gilman DB 6-0 180 Kahuku U. S. Naval Academy
Source: Schools, players.
> Jordan Agasiva, OL, 6-4, 280, Mililani HS
> Kamuela Borden, OL/DL, 6-3, 240, Iolani School
> Dejaun Butler, CB, 6-0, 190, Santa Monica (Calif.) College
> Paul Harris, WR/KR, 5-11, 190, Jr. Ventura (Calif.) College
> J.R. Hensley, OL, 6-6, 320, Santa Fe HS (Edmond, Okla.)
> Solomon Matautia, LB, 6-2, 220, Campbell HS
> Eperone Moananu, OL, 6-2, 285, Tafuna HS (American Samoa)
> Alex Trifonovitch, P/K, 6-1, 180, Punahou School
> Austin Webb, OT, 6-8, 312, Highland Park HS (Dallas)
What’s more, these members of the 2015 recruiting class already are enrolled at UH:
> Dylan Collie, 5-10, 175, Oak Ridge HS (Utah)
> Dayton Furuta, LB, Mililani HS
> Sione Kauhi, DE, 6-5, 240, Wilsonville (Ore.) HS
> Makani Kema-Kaleiwahea, LB, 6-3, 240, Arizona/Kamehameha Schools
> Matt Norman, OL, 6-5,250, Fullerton (Calif.) College
> D.J. Riggins, RB, Christian Oaks HS (Calif.)
> Manly Williams, LB, Farrington HS
> Russell Williams, 6-1, 225, Sacramento City College
> Max Wittek, QB, 6-4, 240, USC
Quarterback Aaron Zwahlen and offensive lineman Gus Lavaka complete two-year church missions this spring and will join the Warriors in June.
Correction: Punahou School offensive lineman Semisi Uluvave did not make a commitment to any school before signing a national letter of intent with California Wednesday, as was reported in an earlier version of this story.