Warriors' 2011 recruiting class pulls in top players

By Mike Cherry - bio | email

Honolulu (HawaiiNewsNow) – University of Hawaii head football coach Greg McMackin announced the Warriors' 2011 recruiting class Wednesday at a press conference at the Stan Sheriff Center. McMackin and his coaching staff secured commitments from 25 high school and junior college prospects for the upcoming season.

2011 Signing Class

Name Pos                              Ht      Wt      Cl      Hometown/Last School

Junior Alexis DL                     6-3     245     Fr      Los Angeles, CA / Crenshaw HS

Justin Alo QB                         6-2     185     Fr      Carson, CA/Carson HS

Chinedu Promise Amadi WR    5-10   175     Fr      Ontario, CA/Chino HS

Ijumaa Armstrong DB             5-11   180     Fr     Culver City, CA/Culver City HS

Brian Clay DB                        6-0     180     Fr      Vacaville, CA/ Will C. Wood HS

Craig Cofer DE                       6-4     255    So      Livermore, CA/Grossmont College

Brenden Daley LB                   6-4     255    Jr       Moorpark , CA/Ventura College

Trevor Davis WR                     6-1     170    Fr      Oakley, CA/Alhambra HS

Ben Dew* OL                          6-4     305    Fr      Auckland, New Zealand/World of Life

Cecil Doe* WR                        6-3     200    Jr      Maple Grove, MN/N.D. State College of Science

Mike Edwards DB                    5-10    175    So     Cleveland, OH/Coffeyville (KS) CC

Penitito Faalologo LB                6-0     220    Fr      Au, American Samoa/Fagaitua HS

Chris Gant WR                        6-0      175    Jr      Sylmar, CA/Moorpark JC

Tyler Gray LB                         6-3      215    Fr      Templeton, CA/Templeton HS

Will Gregory RB                      6-0      190    Fr      Compton, CA/Dominguez HS

Ellis Henderson DB                  6-0      170    Fr      Vancouver, WA/Skyview HS

Tigi Hill DB                              6-3      215    Fr      Kahuku, O'ahu/Kahuku HS

Jared Leaf RB                          6-2      230    Fr      Martinez, CA/Alhambra HS

Ben Mamea LB                         6-0      215    Fr      Kahuku, O'ahu/Kahuku HS

Blake Muir* OL                         6-5      282    Fr      Sutherland, NSW, Australia/Kirrawee HS

Thomas Olds OL                       6-4      275    Fr      San Clemente, CA/San Clemente HS

Michael Sellers* DB                  6-1      180    Fr      'Ewa Beach, O'ahu/Campbell HS

Kendrick Van Ackeren LB          6-1      210    Fr       Bellevue, WA/Bellevue HS

Justin Vele LB                           6-0      210    Fr      'Ewa Beach, O'ahu/Farrington HS

Tavita Woodard DL                   6-4       250   So      Lâ'ie, O'ahu/Eastern Arizona College

* denotes already enrolled in school

Junior Alexis (DL, 6-3, 245, Crenshaw [Calif.])

Named first team all-L.A. City…helped team capture second consecutive L.A. City championship over Carson High School….recorded 74 tackles, which ranked 11th in the league and six sacks, which ranked fourth…also had one fumble recovery…had three sacks against JW North…recorded 12 tackles each against North Gwinnett and Manual Arts…had 10 tackles against Narbonne…as a junior team advanced to the Division I state championship game and was named all-city…lived in Miami, Fla., for six years…played both sides of the ball as offensive guard and defensive tackle…also recruited by San Diego State and Fresno State.

Justin Alo (QB, 6-2, 185, Carson HS [Calif.])

Named first team all-L.A. City and Marine League player of the year…also named Daily Breeze All-Area first team…passed for 2,534 yards and 18 touchdowns with a 60.8 completion percentage as a senior…led Carson to the City Section Division I championship game…averaged 194.9 yards passing per game…also rushed 50 times for 793 yards and three touchdowns for a 61.0 yards per game average…participated in the Polynesian All-America Classic all-star game and led the West team to a 21-8 victory…also recruited by Washington, Washington State, and Colorado.

Chinedu Promise Amadi (WR, 5-10, 175, Chino HS [Calif.])

Named first-team all-Inland Valley as a utility back and first-team all-CIF Southern Section Central Division as a defensive back in 2010…attended same high school as former All-American receiver Greg Salas…played both sides of the ball as a receiver and defensive back…as a senior, led the league in scoring with 24 touchdowns, including four against Garey HS and Northview HS…finished with 46 receptions for 790 yards and 10 TDs and also rushed 50 times for 503 yards and 14 TDs…ranked second in the league in receiving yards and eighth in rushing…on defense, had a league-high five interceptions and also finished with 30 total tackles…served as the team's punter, averaging 39.2 yards per punt…helped lead team to 11-1 record after finishing 0-10 in 2009…also recruited by UCLA, Arizona State, Boise State, Utah, and New Mexico State.

Ijumaa Armstrong (DB, 5-11, 180, Culver City HS [Calif.])

Ranked 10th in the league in total tackles with 56…played both sides of the ball as a receiver and safety…as a junior, led the team in interceptions with four and recorded 67 tackles…named first-team all-league…a three-time all-conference selection…earned team's Ironman Award…picked UH over San Jose State and New Mexico.

Brian Clay (DB, 6-0, 180, Will C. Wood HS [Calif.])

Named all-Monticello Empire second team as a cornerback and quarterback…also named all-state second team…passed for 1,548 yards and rushed for 1,090 yards…had 91 total tackles…selected to play in Holiday Classic High School Football All-Star Game in Sacramento, the first time in Will C. Wood history a player has been selected…three-year starter at quarterback and cornerback…as a junior amassed 51 total tackles, 10 pass break-ups, two interceptions, and three forced fumbles had 1,200 yards of total offense…during sophomore season, totaled 50 tackles, seven pass break-ups, two picks and threw for 1,988 yards and 21 TDs…picked UH over San Jose State, Nevada, and New Mexico State.

Craig Cofer (DE, 6-4, 255, Grossmont College [Calif.])

Played one year at Grossmont College…finished third on the team with 50 tackles…also had 9.5 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, one pass breakup and two quarterback hurries…attended Southern Oregon and redshirted in 2009…a 2009 graduate of Livermore High School in California…as a senior, named honorable mention all-East Bay Athletic League…picked UH over Nevada, San Jose State, and San Diego State.

Brenden Daley (LB, 6-4, 255, Ventura JC [Calif.])

Ranked No. 44 among top junior college prospects in the country…as a sophomore, tied for the team-lead with 100 total tackles, including team-high 15.5 tackles for loss and seven sacks…had one interception and one forced fumble…tied for eighth in the conference in tackles at 10.0 per game…named first-team all-conference…in 2009 tallied 58 tackles, including 5.0 for loss, and two sacks…a 2009 graduate of Moorpark High School…as a senior, earned linebacker of the year honors from the Ventura County Coaches Association after tallying 118 tackles, 17 for loss, six sacks, and an interception…selected Division II first-team all-state by MaxPreps…picked first-team all-CIF Southern Section Northern Division…also named first-team all-county and first-team all-Marmonte League…helped Moorpark capture the league title and reach the championship game of the Northern Division…also recruited by Utah, Washington, and Oregon.

Trevor Davis (WR, 6-1, 170, Alhambra HS [Calif.])

A three-sport athlete at Alhambra High School…named among the Top 20 East Bay football prospects…selected to the first-team all-Diablo Foothill Athletic League and honorable mention all-Metro…hauled in 43 passes for 876 yards and nine touchdowns…had nine receptions for 185 yards and one TD vs. Miramonte HS…had touchdowns of 64 and 78 yards in win over Dougherty Valley HS…in track and field, competed in the long jump and triple jump events with personal bests of 22-0.5 and 46 feet, respectively…teammate of fellow UH recruit Jared Leaf…also recruited by Oregon State, Fresno State, Idaho, San Jose State, and Colorado State.

Ben Dew (OL, 6-3, 305, World of Life [Hawai'i])

Played the 2009 season for Word of Life Academy before moving back to New Zealand…named honorable mention all-ILH…also a skilled rugby player…sister Rebecca is a junior post player for the Rainbow Wahine basketball team…born in Gainesville, Fla, and spent time living in Tennessee…picked UH over Idaho.

Cecil Doe (WR, 6-3, 200, North Dakota State College of Science)

Played two years at North Dakota State College of Science…as a sophomore, named honorable mention all-conference despite missing most of the season due to injuries…caught 16 passes for

289 yards and three touchdowns as a freshman in 2009…a 2009 graduate of Wayzata High School in Plymouth, Minn…an all-state first team and Star-Tribune all-Metro selection as a senior…had 21 catches for 546 yards and seven TDs…picked UH over Central Michigan, Western Michigan, and Michigan State.

Mike Edwards (DB, 5-10, 175, Coffeyville CC [Kan.])

Redshirted at Coffeyville Community College in Kansas in 2010…signed with Tennessee in 2009 and played in eight games as a true freshman…tallied five tackles in limited action…a 2009 graduate of Glenville High School in Cleveland, Ohio…one publication rated him as the 21st best cornerback in the country and 21st overall prospect in the state of Ohio…also rated No. 36 cornerback nationally by ESPN…as a senior, named first-team all-Ohio and all-district…named one of the Cleveland Plain Dealer's Top 40 high school football players…accounted for 34 tackles and five interceptions…also was a standout return specialist, who averaged 20 yards on punt returns and almost 33 yards on kick returns…recruited out of high school heavily by Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Illinois, and Cincinnati.

Penitito Faalologo (LB, 6-0, 220, Fagaitua HS [American Samoa])

Playing for the World team in the USA vs. the World all-star football game in Austin, Texas…played on both sides of the ball at linebacker and fullback…named the Most Valuable Player of the Samoa Bowl VIII all-star game…helped Fagaitua to a national runner-up finish as a senior…picked UH over Colorado, Arizona, and SMU.

Chris Gant (WR, 6-0, 175, Moorpark College [Calif.])

Named to JC Gridwire All-America first team…played two years at Moorpark College…named first-team all-California Region V and first-team All-Western State Conference…led all receivers in the Southern California Football Association with 81 receptions for 1,134 yards and 17 touchdowns in 10 games played in 2010…broke single-season school records for receptions and yards…had school-record 17 catches for 238 yards in a win at Chaffey College…broke 25-year old school career records with 145 receptions for 1,945 yards, and 33 touchdowns, the latter of which is believed to be a state record…as a freshman, tallied 64 catches for 811 yards and 16 touchdowns…a 2009 graduate of Bishop Alemany High School…picked UH over Utah, Washington State, and New Mexico.

Tyler Gray (LB, 6-3, 215, Templeton HS [Calif.])

Named first-team all-Los Padres League and defensive back of the year…selected as Max Preps all-state second team…also earned all-CIF Southern Section Northwest Division first team and The Tribune's all-San Luis Obispo County first team as a linebacker…rated No. 42 outside linebacker prospect in the country and the 71st overall recruit in the state of California…named to Cal-Hi Sports medium-sized schools all-state team…tallied 143 tackles and five sacks and rushed for 1,628 yards and 25 touchdowns… also caught eight passes for 107 yards and a score…led Templeton to its first-ever CIF Northwest Division semifinals…as a junior, rushed for 597 yards and 10 touchdowns...defensively, had 116 total tackles, while posting two sacks, two interceptions, one fumble recovery and one blocked punt…picked UH over Air Force and San Jose State.

Will Gregory (RB, 6-0, 190, Dominguez HS [Calif.])

Rated as the 46th best running back in the country…also ranked 84th-best prospect in the state of California…as a senior, rushed for over 700 yards and 12 touchdowns in seven games…missed the team's first five games due to injury…selected to the all-CIF Southern Section Western Division first team and all-area as a junior and senior…in 2009, led Dominguez to the second round of the CIF-SS playoffs and rushed for 1,657 yards and 23 TDs on 215 carries…also recruited by Washington, Arizona State, Boise State, Nevada, California, and New Mexico.

Ellis Henderson (DB, 6-0, 170, Skyview HS [Wash.])

Picked as the Seattle Times' 4A Greater St. Helens League defensive player of the year in 2010…also named all-league first team as a wide receiver…selected to first-team all-state as defensive back by the Tacoma News…picked as an all-state honorable mention utility back and defensive back by the Associated Press…rated among Seattle Times' Top 100 players and selected as the No. 11 overall prospect in the state of Washington…first player in GSHL history to earn first-team honors at four different positions (WR/DB/KR/AP)…helped team to third consecutive 4A GSHL football title in 2010…as a junior and caught 37 passes for 717 yards and nine TDs and ran for 84 yards on five carries…also had three returns for touchdowns…on defense, had 52 solo tackles, 17 assisted tackles, three sacks, and three interceptions…rated as one of the state's top baseball prospects, who is related to Baseball Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson…picked UH over Washington.

Tigi Hill (DB, 6-3, 215, Kahuku HS [Hawai'i])

Rated the No. 3 prospect in the state of Hawai'i and No. 39 outside linebacker in the country…named Honolulu Star-Advertiser first team all-state and first-team all-OIA Red East…picked as the seventh-best player in the state by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser…played in the 2011 Polynesian All-American Football Classic in Los Angeles…also played in the H.U.B. Goodwill Senior Classic all-star games…picked on the Honolulu All-Nike Combine team…as a junior, selected honorable-mention all-state and helped Kahuku to a state runner-up finish…picked UH over Utah State.

Jared Leaf (RB, 6-2, 230, Alhambra HS [Calif.])

Named first-team all-Diablo Foothill Athletic League on both offense at running back and defense at linebacker…also selected honorable mention all-Metro…named among the Top 20 East Bay football prospects…participated in the 2010 Holiday Classic All-Star football game in Sacramento, Calif…picked as the city of Martinez Male Athlete of the Fall…rushed for 1,381 yards and had a league-best 19 total touchdowns…rushed for 323 yards on 33 carries and scored five touchdowns against El Molino High School…named first-team all-league linebacker as a junior…competed in track and field in the 4x100 relay and ran the anchor leg of the 4x200 relay…teammate of fellow UH recruit Trevor Davis…also recruited by Washington, Fresno State, Washington State, San Jose State, Army, Navy, and Cornell.

Ben Mamea (LB, 6-0, 215, Kahuku HS [Hawai'i])

Named Honolulu Star-Advertiser first team all-state and first-team all-OIA Red East…ranked as the eighth best prospect in the state by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser…also rated as the 186th best outside linebacker in the country…played in the H.U.B. Goodwill Senior Classic all-star game…picked on the Honolulu All-Nike Combine team…as a junior, earned first-team all-state honors and helped Kahuku to a state runner-up finish…named to AIG Foundation honorable mention all-star team.

Blake Muir (OL, 6-5, 282, Kirrawee HS [Australia])

Member of the Sutherland Seahawks Gridiron club…played in the 2009 GNSW Colts and Senior competitions…led the team in sacks, tackles and tackles for loss…his 58 tackles is the sixth-highest single season total in Colts history and eight sacks is tied for fourth highest…a 2009 graduate of Kirrawee High School…played both sides of the ball on the line… national title medalist in swimming and is an accomplished Australian Rules player…picked UH over SMU.

Thomas Olds (OL, 6-4, 275, San Clemente HS [Calif.])

Named first-team all-South Coast League on defense…also selected to third-team all-Orange County…played both sides of the ball, including offensive guard…defensively, tallied 44 tackles, including three sacks…had 11 tackles in win over Dana Hills HS…named to Orange County's Hot 100 list of the county's best players…also recruited by San Diego State, San Jose State, New Mexico, and UNLV.

Michael Sellers (DB, Campbell HS [Hawai'i])

Named first-team all-OIA Red West in 2009…a 2010 graduate of Campbell High School on O'ahu…also competed in track and field in the long jump and high jump events…tied for fourth at the state championships in the high jump…also recruited by San Jose State, New Mexico State, and Idaho.

Kendrick Van Ackeren (LB, 6-1, 210, Bellevue HS [Wash.])

Named the Seattle Times' 3A Washington state player of the year…selected as the 12th best prospect in the state of Washington…picked as the 50th best safety in the country…played both sides of the ball at quarterback and safety…finished with 960 passing yards and nine touchdowns, while rushing for 550 yards and five touchdowns…also had six interceptions on the defensive side of the ball…helped lead team to a 13-1 record in 2010 and third straight 3A state championship…as a junior, finished with 90 tackles, four fumbles caused and three interceptions…picked UH over Washington, Utah, and Idaho.

Justin Vele (LB, 6-0, 210, Farrington HS [Hawai'i])

Named the OIA Red East defensive player of the year…selected to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser all-state first team…anchored defense that allowed only 49.3 yards rushing per game…played in the H.U.B. Goodwill Senior Classic all-star game…as a junior, named all-OIA Red East second team and all-state second team by the Honolulu Advertiser and Honolulu Star-Bulletin…an honorable mention all-state selection as a sophomore and second-team all-OIA…picked UH over Washington, Colorado, and San Diego State.

Tavita Woodard (DL, 6-4, 250, Eastern Arizona College [Ariz.])

Attended Eastern Arizona Junior College for two years…played defensive end, tallying 5.5 sacks and 27 tackles…redshirted in 2009…attended Kahuku High School during freshman year then transferred to McKinley High School where he graduated in 2009…a two-sport athlete in football and basketball…named first-team all-OIA Red East as a linebacker and honorable mention all-state as a senior…during junior year, earned all-OIA Red East first team as a wide receiver…first-team all-OIA White Division in basketball and honorable mention all-state…also recruited by Nebraska, California, Iowa State, and Kansas State.

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