Recruiting can wait; Manley has playoffs on his mind


POSTED: Sunday, October 11, 2009

Scores of University of Hawaii football supporters were at Hugh Yoshida Stadium on Friday night to watch Leilehua quarterback Andrew Manley play his final regular-season game.

They hope they will get plenty of opportunities to see him play after his high school career wraps up.

In handling the recruiting efforts from dozens of colleges, Manley says he will focus his energy solely on playing championship-caliber football with the goal of taking the Mules back to the state title game.

“;I have not decided yet. For the moment, I just want to concentrate on helping our team prepare for the playoffs,”; Manley said. “;If UH is committed to having me play the quarterback position I will strongly consider the offer.”;

The 6-foot-3 senior was on fire, completing 17 of 23 pass attempts for 279 yards and four TDs, all in the first half to lead seventh-ranked Leilehua to a 38-8 victory over Waipahu.

;  He helped Leilehua capture a share of the Oahu Interscholastic Association Red West Division title along with Waianae. Both are 5-1 in league play.

“;Tonight was fun,”; Manley said. “;The team came together as a family. I'm really happy about the way we all played. But we're heading into the second season and I want to try my best to take this team as far as I can. Then I will think about my (college) choices.”;

Manley says he will make his selection based on school tradition, which program offers the major he wishes to take, the comfort of working with the team's coaches and the style of offense a team runs.

Besides UH, Manley said he is considering Idaho, Marshall, Ohio and Colorado.

Fans at the game say they would be thrilled to see Manley choose UH.

“;I would definitely watch more UH games if he decides to go to there. I think he could help UH tremendously,”; Aiea native Karen Imamoto said. “;I would even consider buying season tickets.”;

Former Leilehua player Bryant Moniz is making major contributions for UH this season. Yesterday Moniz got the start at QB against Fresno State.

Manley says seeing Moniz get a chance to play is a factor he is noticing.

“;I'm happy to see one of our school's graduates get a chance to prove himself. I certainly will be cheering him on,”; Manley said.

“;Whatever school gets him will get better,”; Leilehua coach Nolan Tokuda said. “;He has an excellent understanding of the game. Choosing a school will be a challenging decision for him, but he's mature enough to handle it.”;