HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Make Hawaii great again.
That was the mission statement from St. Louis cornerback Kai Kaneshiro and quarterback Chevan Cordeiro Wednesday morning after signing their letters of intent to the Rainbow Warriors on early signing day.
"It feels really good. Back a year ago, I always wanted to get an offer and when I did, it was the best day of my life. Being able to start my journey right now is more than great," Kaneshiro said. "It means a lot to stay home and just play in front of my family and my friends and to have the island on my back, just to show my support that I belong here."
Joining Kaneshiro and Cordeiro on the stage Wednesday on St. Louis' campus was linebacker/safety Isaiah Tufaga, who signed early to play for the Oregon State Beavers.
Despite receiving multiple offers and fielding dozens of phone calls from competing programs, Tufaga said that the decision to attend Oregon State came from his heart.
"I never did want to break any bridges with anybody, but it was all love in the end with Oregon State and I felt that that's where I needed to be," he said. "It means a lot, especially my for my community that went there. They built their legacy over there and I feel that me going over, I can build something over there also."
While Kaneshiro and Tufaga were celebrated for signing early, many eyes were on Cordeiro Wednesday as he signed on to play quarterback for his dream school.
"It feels exciting, I've been waiting for this my whole life. This whole offseason, I've been training for UH and I'm just ready," Cordeiro said.
Cordeiro was named the Gatorade Hawaii Player of the Year last week after leading St. Louis to an Open Division State title. But even after exceeding expectations this season and garnering national attention, Cordeiro's commitment to the Aloha State never wavered.
"I was 100 percent committed from the start. I knew from the beginning that I was going to UH and just to sign early, now I get to train and work for them," he said. "Hawaii is my home. I want to stay home, play in front of my family, play for the state and I just want to make Hawaii great again."