Thursday, January 22, 2004


UH gets another

Linebacker Lafu Tuioti-Mariner
gives an oral commitment to UH

Corona, Calif., is by no means a tiny ville. It is one of the fastest growing towns in America, with a population of 138,000.

Still, a high percentage of Corona's residents are University of Hawaii football players. The number will go from three to four on letter of intent day Feb. 4.

Clarence "Lafu" Tuioti-Mariner, a 6-foot, 280-pound lineman from Corona High School, made an oral commitment yesterday to accept a football scholarship from UH.

Tuioti-Mariner joins three players from one of Corona High's rivals, Centennial High School. That's where current Warriors Mike and Ray Bass and Lamar Broadway went.

"Yeah, I know them," Tuioti-Mariner said, laughing. "I'm looking forward to being on their side finally."

Tuioti-Mariner was all-league on both sides of the ball in high school. But he said he will play defensive tackle as a Warrior, as did his uncle, Tony Tuioti.

Tuioti-Mariner visited UH last week.

"It was my first time in Hawaii, and I liked everything," he said. "Not just because it's Hawaii, but the people were all nice and I love the campus. I like how it's tropical, because I was born in Samoa."

Colorado is among the schools that recruited Tuioti-Mariner. He turned down scholarship offers from Boise State, Portland State, Utah and Utah State.

It's possible Tuioti-Mariner could get some early playing time if the coaches deem him ready to play as a true freshman. Hawaii's entire starting defensive line has used up its eligibility.

UH doesn't have that problem on the offensive line, but the Warriors are always looking for blockers with potential.

One is here visiting now; 6-5, 270-pound Terrence Apted is considered one of the top prospects out of American Samoa this year.

Also, 5-11, 260-pound defensive tackle Soloni Taumololo (Kaimuki/Yuba JC) and 5-10, 220-pound linebacker Dylan Moss (Saint Louis) have been offered scholarships by Alcorn State and will visit the Division I-AA school. Moss visited UH last week, and Taumololo gets a look at Manoa this weekend.


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