HONOLULU (KHNL) - It's a day that many high school football seniors agonize over, where to play their college ball.
For Wade Keliikipi, his parents wanted to him to stay close to home, but his heart pulled him to the Northwest.
"When I went up there on my trip I just felt comfortable being there, I guess it was something in my heart that was telling me it was the right place for me" said Keliikipi.
For others like Punahou's Dalton Hilliard and Kaiser's Bijon Mostoufi, they knew several months ago, where they wanted to go.
"I haven't wavered at all in my decision ever since October, it's definitely a place for me", said Hilliard.
"My decision came down to the football program, the atmosphere and the people", Mostoufi said.
Hilliard's teammate, Kimo Makaula will now be on the opposing sideline for conference games, after choosing to play at the University of Washington.
"I wanted to play offense, Washington was a great decision and I think I fit perfectly into coach Sark's offense", stated Makaula.
While many on the island are heading to the mainland, others like Corey Nielsen from Cerritos, California, are playing their college ball here in Hawaii.
Nielsen is one of only 50 players in the nation to win Old Spice Player of the Year.
"Just to be one of 50 is a great honor, you're being recognized with some of the best players in the USA" said Nielsen.
One of Nielsen's future primary targets will be St. Louis' Billy Ray Stutzman, who graduated early and is now enrolled at UH.
"We just started workouts so I'm trying to get used to waking up early and getting that done, but it's a great program, I love it there and I'm having a lot of fun", said Stutzman.
Stutzman will be joined by three Kahuku Red Raiders, Kamalani Alo, St. John Lessary and Aulola Tonga.
"My families here and I want to play in front of everyone, especially the ones who have been cheering for me my whole life", Tonga said.
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