Thursday, January 25, 2001
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Posted on: Thursday, January 25, 2001

St. Louis tackle Maiava to play for Oregon

By Stephen Tsai
Advertiser Staff Writer

Ending weeks of speculation, defensive tackle Lyle Maiava of St. Louis School announced he will attend the University of Oregon on a football scholarship.

Since returning from a visit to the Eugene, Ore., campus three weeks ago, several scouting services and Web sites reported Maiava’s commitment.

But St. Louis coach Cal Lee said Maiava struggled between Oregon and the University of Hawaii before finally making his decision Tuesday.

"It was awfully hard for him to decide to leave Hawaii and his family," Lee said. "I don’t know all of his reasonings, but I know it was a tough decision."

Maiava also took a recruiting trip to Wisconsin. He canceled recruiting visits to Arizona and Southern Cal.

The 6-foot-2, 300-pound Maiava was one of the state’s top defensive linemen last season. He is a two-time all-state player and, as a junior, received All-America mention. Lee said Maiava can bench press 415 pounds.

"He’s a big, strong defensive lineman whom people need on the defensive line," Lee said. "He’s very mobile."

Maiava also competes in the shot put and discus.

Maiava attended Waipahu High as a freshman before transferring to St. Louis, where he easily blended into student life.

He is a student body officer, as well as a member of the Polynesian and Religion clubs.

Maiava, who aspires to be a computer engineer, has a cumulative grade-point average of 3.4. He already has earned a qualifying score on the SAT that will enable him to play as a college freshman.

"He’s very smart and articulate," Lee said. "He’s just a good kid and a hard worker. In the classroom, he’s very bright. On the field, he’s going to play hard all through the very end. He’s a guy you want on your team. He’s a winner."

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