Ahh spring time. Full of flowers and groundhogs and baseball and love. And now, for the ravenous fans of Hawaii Football, practice! Sure the team got on the field a few weeks ago. But really, it doesn't feel like reality until the pads come on, which they did last Saturday. I was there. It was awesome. So why the delay in the posting? Because I'm a fan. And because I get irrationally excited. So I took a few days to take a few breaths. Better that, I figured, than subject you good people to my over-enthusiastic drivel (which is probably coming anyway.)
Some quick impressions and thoughts: I had the good fortune of speaking to quite a few players, all of whom were fantastic people (transcriptions to follow in the next few days.) Still, I couldn't help but become even more enamored with Taylor Graham. He's well spoken, strong armed, and every bit the 6 foot 5 he's listed at. Also standing out on offense were Harold Moleni and Justin Vele. Both of whom play TE and both of whom look like weapons. Moleni in particular reminds me of Brandon Manumaleuna. Not necessarily cut like a Vernon Davis but huge (6-2, 255) and with great hands. I think he'll be fantastic in Norm's offense.
On defense, both Jerrol Garcia-Williams and Brenden Daley stood out, though Brenden also stepped on Tavita Woodard's hand so I hope that doesn't cause any lasting damage (and also looks remarkably like Brian Cushing.) Garcia-Williams is on the smaller side (only listed at 205 though probably closer to 200) but he's a terror in the middle and in coverage. He always seemed to be around the ball and people (besides me) were taking notice. When I asked some of the spectators who stood out to them, more than a few mentioned him (though only by number, not by name. Guess he's not quite there yet.)
Bottom line? This season is off to a great start so far! Sure I'm usually drunk off of the kool-aid by this time every season, but hey, that's the price of being a fan. Stay tuned!