Sam Papalii top candiate for Saint Louis football coaching position
Sam Papalii, a former longtime college assistant and Kealakehe head coach, has emerged as the leading candidate for the Saint Louis School head football coaching job, according to sources close to the situation.
Papalii had been a college assistant at Hawai'i, Arizona, Utah, Iowa State and UNLV before leading the Kealakehe program from 2001-2005.
He guided the Waveriders to a 39-16-1 record and two Big Island Interscholastic Federation Division I championships.
Papalii declined comment when reached by The Advertiser.
Papalii would fill a vacancy left by John Hao, the Crusaders' coach the past two seasons.
School spokesperson Jodi Anne Yoshida said that the school has not hired a coach yet and the process is ongoing.
New athletic director Ed Paola denied a report that Papalii had been hired.
After the school named Paola its new athletic director to replace Ulima Afoa, all coaches of the fall and winter sports were asked to submit "courtesy letters of resignation" to allow the incoming AD a chance to assess the programs and hire each head coach individually.
Hao said he applied for the job.