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Thursday, September 19, 2002


[UH FOOTBALL]




Recruits
hit-or-miss
for Hawaii

10 prospective Warriors from
the 2002 class are not on the roster

Who they are


By Dave Reardon
dreardon@starbulletin.com

With linebacker Marco Chavez and quarterback Jason Whieldon deciding to leave the team, 10 of the 25 Hawaii football team's 2002 recruits are not on the Warriors' roster.

It is unlikely Chavez and Whieldon will come back, but coach June Jones said he expects several others to return to the team.

Five recruits have yet to meet academic requirements. Also, offensive lineman Mesepa Reed is enrolled at UH but not practicing, quarterback Inoke Funaki is on a religious mission and defensive lineman John Siofele died in a car accident last summer.

Jones said he cannot comment on the specific situations of the individuals who haven't met university or NCAA academic requirements to practice with the team or play in games. But he said he expects most or all of the five to return next semester.

"It's not unusual," Jones said. "They'll be here in January."

Some attrition over the years is normal for college football programs: Of UH's 2001 recruiting class, 14 of 20 players are on the team now, and five fifth-year seniors remain from former coach Fred vonAppen's 1998 recruiting class.

Jones said Reed is still on a football scholarship and "it's very possible" he will return to the team.

Several recruits who are on the roster have already made an impact two games into their UH careers; junior college transfers Chad Kalilimoku (linebacker), Jeremiah Cockheran (wide receiver) and John West (kick returner) have seen game action, as have true freshmen Kenny Patton (cornerback) and Abu Ma'afala (defensive tackle). Another first-year freshman, Tala Esera (defensive tackle), is poised to play if needed.

Last year, running back Mike Bass was the only true freshman to play.

"We know we have some freshmen who are contributing and can contribute this year," Jones said. "Others will redshirt and be good players for us next year."

Chavez, a 6-foot-3, 243-pound transfer from Palomar College, left the team two weeks ago.

"He went home (to Los Angeles) because of family problems," Jones said.

Jones and defensive coordinator Kevin Lempa said Chavez didn't indicate that a lack of playing time bothered him. Chavez, in a logjam at linebacker, one of UH's deepest units, did not play against EIU or BYU.

"He would have at least played on special teams," Lempa said.

Whieldon played in both games. He left Hawaii last week for his home in Orange, Calif., because of a family matter he chose not to disclose. He decided not to return to UH.


UH football

Who: Hawaii (1-1) at Texas-El Paso (1-2)
When: Saturday, 3 p.m. Hawaii time
TV: KFVE (Channel 5)
Radio: 1420-AM
Of note: UH's 66-7 victory over UTEP last year was Hawaii's largest margin of victory against a Division I opponent


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2002 recruiting class

Player Pos. Yr. Status

Kalavi Blanchard OL Fr. Has not met academic requirements

Marco Chavez LB Jr. Left for personal reasons

Jeremiah Cockheran WR Jr. 2 receptions for 32 yards

Ross Dickerson WR Fr. Had good fall camp, likely to redshirt

Tala Esera OL Fr. Has not played, on travel roster

Matt Faga DL Jr. Has not met academic requirements

Denny Flanagan WR Fr. Has not practiced due to injury

Inoke Funaki QB Fr. On religious mission

Chad Kalilimoku LB Jr. Backup has 3 tackles

Marques Kaonohi OL Fr. Will likely redshirt

Kahai LaCount OL Fr. Will likely redshirt

Abu Ma'afala DL Fr. Backup has sack and INT for TD

A.J. Martinez DB Fr. Has not met academic requirements

Kaipo Patoc DL Fr. Will likely redshirt

Kenny Patton DB Fr. Played against BYU

Se'e Paumele WR Jr. Backup has not played

Mel Purcell, Jr. DE Fr. Has not met academic requirements

Mesepa Reed OL Fr. In school, could return

Samson Satele OL Fr. Backup at LG

John Siofele DL Fr. Died in car accident 7/15/02

Ryan Stickler QB Fr. Will likely redshirt

Darrell Tautofi DL Jr. Has not met academic requirements

Dane Uperesa OL Fr. Will likely redshirt

John West RB Jr. 1 kickoff return for 18 yards

Jason Whieldon QB Jr. Left for personal reasons



UH Athletics



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