With the 27-member University of Hawaii football recruiting class signed, sealed, and delivered, the focus for head coach Nick Rolovich and the rest of the coaching staff turns to spring training camp.
The Rainbow Warriors are now just six weeks away until kickoff for spring training on March 21.
Rolovich and company attacked the trenches in this class, securing the commitments of 14 lineman, an even seven on offense and defense.
One of the junior college signees brings a brotherly bond to the ‘Bows: 6-foot-3, 290 pound defensive tackle Justus Tavai is the little brother of reigning team MVP Jahlani Tavai, who is a two-time All-Mountain West honoree at middle linebacker.
“I’m just super excited to have one more opportunity to play with my little brother,” Jahlani Tavai said.
Justus Tavai comes to Manoa as a sophomore in the 2018 season after playing one year at El Camino College in California, where he racked up 41 tackles with two sacks in his freshman campaign.
“Of course, we still have to prove ourselves, since we have a new staff, new scheme, so as much as I love having him around, we gotta make sure we dial in and know that we got a job to do,” Jahlani Tavai said.
The last time the two Tavais suited up on the same team was in 2013 at Mira Costa High School in California.
“Him and I played alongside each other. I played nose guard, he played defensive end, so it’s going to be a little different, because he’ll be on the d-line and I’ll be right behind him, so it’s going to be exciting,” Jahlani Tavai said.
If Justus Tavai can do justice to the legacy that his older brother has left before his senior year in Manoa, Rainbow Warrior fans should be excited for a rebuilt defensive line.
“He’s a ball hawk. He’s always there around the ball, and he’s much bigger than I am,” Jahlani Tavai said. “I’m pretty sure he’s stronger than me in the weight room, so it’s going to be exciting to actually see him prepare with us and just get out there on the field and ball out.”
Hawaii has 15 scheduled workouts for spring camp. The spring game is slated for April 27 or 28.