With over a dozen FBS scholarship offers to his name, Mililani’s Wynden Ho’ohuli is a hot commodity among college coaches heading into his senior year.
National recruiting websites have taken notice as well, as the 6-foot-3, 220-pound linebacker is listed by 247Sports, Rivals.com and ESPN Recruiting as the top prospect in the state of Hawaii for the class of 2020.
“Just taking it all in, seeing all the hard work paying off,” Ho’ohuli told KHON2’ Alan Hoshida. “Me and the boys, we’ve just been working hard every time, just trying to get our names out there. Just seeing all the things I’ve been doing throughout the season and even my earlier ages, all the work I’ve been doing, it’s a blessing.”
Ho’ohuli’s offer sheet includes schools from all over the country. Some of the West Coast’s top programs in Washington, Oregon, Utah and USC, as have other prominent Power Five teams such as Nebraska, Kansas State and Virginia.
If it weren’t for the travel restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, Ho’ohuli would have gotten the opportunity to pay official visits to some of those schools. Instead, some coaches have given him virtual campus tours via FaceTime.
“Just been talking to the coaches every day,” Ho’ohuli says. “We’ve been having calls, FaceTime, they’ve just been showing me around the campus and stuff, building a good relationship. Just talking about what they have to offer me and what I could potentially do when I get to the school or school-wise what I might pursue.”
One school that Ho’ohuli has been in contact with is defending national champion LSU, a place that he called his “dream school” in January. Although the Tigers have yet to offer, Ho’ohuli and his parents have talked to head coach Ed Orgeron.
“Me and my parents, we talked to Coach O from LSU, the head coach. We talked to him on the phone and just hearing his voice, you know his voice is kind of raspy,” Ho’ohuli said. “Me and my parents got all excited because it’s LSU, the No. 1 team in the country. It was exciting. He was talking to me, he was telling me how he liked the tape, how he liked my tape and stuff.”
College offers aside, Ho’ohuli has one last season of high school football to prepare for. Even if there is no official start date yet, all he wants is a chance to win another HHSAA ring.
“I just want to have the season because me and the boys, we’ve been working so hard these past three years,” he said.” Just finishing off my high school career with this senior season, it just won’t give me that hype and stuff but if it ever gets canceled that would be such a bummer because we’ve been working so hard, just one last ride with everybody would be great.
“I got that ring as a sophomore at Saint Louis (before transferring to Mililani) and just getting another ring from another school, different district, would be great as well. Just seeing what we did as a team and we grind it out every day and all the hard work we’ve been putting in on that field. Seeing that is what really makes me happy and stuff because that’s what we’re gonna be striving for and what we that was the goal at the start of the season.”