Wednesday, August 11, 1999
Hammerheads Klaneski,By Pat Bigold
Paogofie up for MVP
Two Hawaii Hammerheads are among five nominated for Most Valuable Player in the Indoor Professional Football League.
Eddie Klaneski, the IPFL's second-leading all-purpose yardage producer, and Chris Paogofie, a three-time defensive player of the week, are in the running for the league's top individual prize.
"I don't know what to say, but it feels good," said a surprised Paogofie, a former all-state defensive player of the year from Waianae High and a two-time junior college All-American at Dixie Junior College (Utah).
"I don't care as much about being nominated for the award as I do about the fact that we're winning right now," said Klaneski, a two-time All-Western Athletic Conference selection in the Rainbows' defensive backfield. "But it's a real big honor, and I'm real happy for Chris, too."
The Hammerheads (10-6) will meet the Mississippi Firedogs (9-7) at the Blaisdell Arena on Saturday night for the right to play the Texas Terminators (12-4) in the IPFL championship game. Saturday's winner will play the Terminators in Austin, Texas, on Aug. 21.
The other nominees for MVP are Texas quarterback James Brown, who leads the IPFL in touchdown passes with 46, Mississippi quarterback John Fourcade, who leads the league in pass rating (104.0) and Mississippi receiver Ken Causey, who has caught 17 touchdown passes.
Paogofie said he was especially happy that two Hammerhead defensive backs were nominated at the same time. The team is second in the IPFL with 26 interceptions.
"The whole backfield sticks together," he said, "so this is really nice."
Klaneski and Paogofie have 11 interceptions between them and have returned five of those picks for touchdowns.
Klaneski, a two-time defensive player of the week, leads the league in kick returns for touchdowns with four.
In other categories, Hawaii's Guy Benjamin, former Rainbows offensive coordinator, has been nominated for coach of the year, along with Texas's Duane Duncum.
Paogofie is also nominated for defensive player of the year. His competition comes from the IPFL's two leading tacklers, Bucky Logan (Rocky Mountain Thunder) and James Hemphill (Louisiana Bayou Beast); the league's second leading sack man (11.5), Aaron Hamilton (Texas); and the league's third leading sack man, Curtis Jeter (Mississippi). Jeter has 8.5 sacks.
Former Hawaii quarterback Tim Carey, who leads the IPFL in completion percentage (63 percent), is a nominee for offensive player of the year.
He's challenged for that award by Brown, Causey, league-leading scorer Darnell Brooks (24 touchdowns) of the Rocky Mountain Thunder and league-leading receiver Shon King of the Idaho Stallions.