Oregon State recruiters
earning their way into
Hawaii living rooms

Beavers coach Mike Riley's
staff finished second in the mind
of at least one local recruit

The Beavers haven't hit the recruiting jackpot in Hawaii just yet, but they're doing something right.


Mika Kane: Almost certain to attend California

Two weeks ago, Pac-Five linebacker Brashton Satele visited Oregon State even though he had already committed to Hawaii. Satele went as an act of courtesy and respect for the OSU staff.

This week, Kamehameha defensive tackle Mika Kane was about to commit to Cal, a campus he enjoyed thoroughly after a visit in mid-December.

However, he will have dinner with Beavers head coach Mike Riley and defensive coordinator Mark Banker tonight.

Kane, a 6-foot-3, 285-pound defensive tackle, is "90 percent" certain about committing to Cal. "Oregon State was the first one to recruit me, and I want to give them their due respect," he said. "I called and told them I was leaning heavily toward Cal. I have a lot going for me there. I like the environment. Abu (Ma'afala) showed me the part of the campus I'd be around a lot," Kane said last night.

After meeting with Oregon State tonight, Kane will have dinner with Cal head coach Jeff Telford and defensive line coach Ken Delgado tomorrow.

Ma'afala, a Kamehameha alum who transferred to Cal from Hawaii last summer, made an impression as a host. "Abu didn't really show us the party environment. He's mellow, and we got to see a lot of things to do with our off time, not just about football," Kane said. "And the coaches are on the players not just about football, but about academics. That kinda reminded me about Kamehameha. It's so much work, and not just about football. And it's on a hill, too."

Another local prospect, Hawaii Prep's highly-coveted lineman Daniel Te'o-Nesheim, met with Washington coach Tyrone Willingham yesterday morning and made an oral commitment to play for the Huskies.

Te'o-Nesheim was heavily recruited by Hawaii, Oregon and Colorado. In fact, after returning from his Hawaii visit, he was highly enthusiastic about playing for the Warriors. However, he returned from a trip to Oregon last week with similar feelings. His trip to Washington was set for this weekend, with a possible visit to Colorado after that.

Instead, the 6-3, 235 pounder will become a Huskie.

Kapolei's Ikaika Aken-Moleta also made a commitment yesterday, agreeing to play for San Diego State. Aken-Moleta, a 6-2, 315-pound offensive tackle, visited Brigham Young over the weekend. Because he is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, BYU had its hopes up, but Aken-Moleta had said a month ago that he was open to all opportunities. He had visited Oregon State earlier in the month and was set for trip to Washington next week.

Aken-Moleta could switch to defense at SDSU, depending on how the Aztecs' other recruiting prospects turn out. After his visit to San Diego last month, he was quite impressed. "I like how they treated us. I got to see new things," Aken-Moleta said.

If he stays at O-line, his coach will be Ed White, a longtime NFL player.

Kamehameha wide receiver Waika Spencer could have lost a lot of motivation after suffering an ACL injury during the state championships. Arizona, Michigan State and UCLA quit calling.

The 6-4, 220-pound senior kept his hopes high. San Diego State offered him a scholarship even before his visit on Jan. 7. The multi-sport standout gave the Aztecs an oral commitment last week.

"My mom says God has a plan for everybody. I wasn't bummed about the injury," said Spencer, who isn't able to play basketball, but has embraced his role as the team's video cameraman.

In late November, Shawn Sisifo Lauvao of Farrington had visits lined up for New Mexico State and Utah State. Within a couple of weeks, an avalanche of interest poured in. The 6-3, 310-pound offensive lineman canceled the visits to NMSU and Utah State. He has visited Cal, Boise State, Arizona State and BYU.

Lauvao, a devout Christian, carries a 3.7 GPA and liked the BYU trip because of the clean atmosphere at the Provo campus. He may visit Washington as well. However, he is still leaning toward Arizona State.

Raphael Ieru is also leaning toward the Sun Devils, who may switch him from O-line to defense. The McKinley senior returned from his visit to Arizona State over the weekend with plenty of confidence. The 6-4, 315-pound tackle is still scheduled to visit Hawaii. He is 40 SAT points away from becoming a Division I qualifier.

Kahuku defensive back Al Afalava has added San Diego State to his travel plans. He will visit the Aztecs on Jan. 28.

Another Kahuku standout, running back Micah Strickland, visited SDSU last week, but doesn't have any more trips lined up. Oregon State will likely wait until spring, and then offer him a scholarship if one of its commits drops out.

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