4 of state's best undecided
BY Stacy Kaneshiro
Advertiser Staff Writer
One reaffirmation and four undecided.
That's where five of the state's top 25 recruits are at a day before national letter of intent signing day.
Tomorrow is the first day football, soccer, track and field, cross country and men's water polo athletes may sign binding national letters of intent. For football, the signing period ends April 1; the other sports' deadline is Aug. 1.
'Aiea's Lawrence Lagafuaina, a Division II All-State defensive lineman, yesterday said he is sticking with his original verbal commitment to Washington after visiting Hawai'i over the weekend.
"Washington was there from the get go," Lagafuaina said. "So I chose Washington."
He said both schools offered him during the summer, but Washington was first.
Kahuku defensive end Kona Schwenke and Punahou safety Jeremy Ioane — recruited by both Notre Dame and Washington — were still undecided as of yesterday. Both are Advertiser Division I first-team All-State selections.
Ioane was reunited with former Buffanblu teammates Manti Te'o and Roby Toma at Notre Dame over the weekend.
"They said there's going to be a rough transition, but there's (a program) for all (incoming) students to (help them) adapt to college," said Ioane, who plans to major in engineering.
Ioane's third choice is Boise State.
Schwenke visited Notre Dame, but ended up not going to Washington as planned because the recruiting "dead period" started yesterday and his trip would have encroached into yesterday.
"I really like Notre Dame," Schwenke said. "I had a good time up there."
But Schwenke said plans are in the works for a visit to Washington this weekend, as the dead period ends Thursday. Schwenke could still be undecided on signing day.
"If I go to (visit) Washington, then I (won't have a decision) on signing day," he said.
Schwenke had earlier made a verbal commitment to Brigham Young, which rescinded its offer after learning he was taking a trip to Notre Dame, Kahuku coach Reggie Torres said.
Since Schwenke's Notre Dame visit, Torres said West Virginia and Hawai'i called him to inquire about the defensive end. But Schwenke said he will pick between UW and Notre Dame.
Meanwhile, Kapolei linebacker Shaydon Akuna said he is deciding among Arizona, Oregon State, Florida State, West Virginia and Arkansas. He has visited Arizona and OSU. He was supposed to visit Florida State this past weekend, but did not because his contact there was "busy" last week, he said. Akuna said all five offers are still alive and that he will decide tomorrow.
Meanwhile, Farrington All-State defensive end V.J. Fehoko said he has narrowed his choices to Hawai'i and Utah.
Fehoko has been exposed to the UH program since he was 5. His father, Vili, is the Warriors' mascot and V.J. has played the drums at UH games through this past season. But his father also is a friend of Utah coach Kyle Whittingham.
"I visited UH, Utah, Washington and Texas Tech, and Stanford on an unofficial visit," Fehoko said. "Oklahoma, Notre Dame and Baylor all wanted me to take trips, and they were trying to convince me not to go to UH. But I think my visit to UH shows my loyalty to the program and how interested I am in a school like UH. It's always been one of my dreams to play there, no matter what other schools came into the picture."Advertiser reporter Wes Nakama contributed to this report.