OIA sports cancellation could impact college educations

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HONOLULU (KHON2) — It’s official. The Oahu Interscholastic Association has cancelled fall and winter sports for the season.

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The decision makes an impact on 12 sports that for many high school kids are more than just a past time. Many of Hawaii’s up-and-coming athletes rely on their junior and senior seasons to attract the attention of college coaches.

“Every sport, both genders, you’re talking hundreds if not thousands of young people that some of these people are from socio-economic statuses that need financial aid,” former UH football coach and Kaiser High School state championship head coach Rich Miano said. “They need scholarships. They need love from these outside coaches to encourage them to attend college.”

One of those young players is Kaimuki High School football and baseball player Koby Moananu, who at 6’2″ and 190 lbs. has the size to play at the next level. He says he doesn’t have any big scholarships yet but has been working hard to earn one.

“For the kids that wanted to show and prove that they can earn a scholarship from big colleges, that’s for all sports not just only football,” Moananu said. “it’s just hard on us.”

While some other states are allowing high school sports to continue, Hawaii kids are now at an even larger disadvantage.

“It’s extremely hard for us to even talk to coaches,” Moananu said. “We don’t have the privilege of all colleges and coaches to be at our games and see our games in person. We only have UH out here. They’re watching us, but high schools on the mainland have a lot more opportunities.”

With those opportunities drying up in Hawaii, Moananu and others are contemplating leaving for greener pastures.

“Personally it’s tough just figuring out what to do next and I might go to Washington to go live with my cousin and play up there,” Moananu said.

Messages left for the OIA were not returned by the time of publishing.

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