Through eight games of his sophomore season, Saint Louis graduate and Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa is on an unprecedented pace to rip through the college football record books.
Tagovailoa has thrown for 25 touchdown passes without a single interception on the season, having not taken a snap in the fourth quarter as the Crimson Tide steamrolled their schedule to an 8-0 start.
This Saturday, the Ewa Beach native will lead his top-ranked, two-time defending national champions into what sets up to be his toughest game since being handed the keys to the Crimson Tide offense, playing at number-three LSU in Baton Rouge.
Tagovailoa, who currently holds a QB rating of 238 which would shatter the all-time record if the season were to end today, has exited his last two outings with right knee ailments.
However, the 2016 Cover2 Marcus Mariota Award winner as state high school player of the year told KHON2 Sports Director Rob DeMello over the phone this week that he is 100-percent, and more than ready for America’s game of the week.
“Like we talked about, this is something that you kind of always grow up dreaming of doing. Playing in big games and whatnot and having another opportunity to play in another big game this Saturday is going to be great,” said Tagovailoa.
“I haven’t really been to this kind of atmosphere, but I have heard it’s a lot louder than a lot of places we’ve been to. You know, I thought Tennessee was loud, but they said this place is really, really loud,” added Tagovailoa. “Anywhere you go when you’re playing away, you’re always going to be the bad person and going into a hostile environment like that, it’s going to be really exciting, you know? This is what fans want to see. This is what college football is all about.”
Beyond the Death Valley crowd, which will be awaiting him on Saturday, will also be childhood friend, Farrington graduate Breiden Fehoko. The LSU junior defensive tackle has 1.5 sacks this season for the Tigers.
“It’s amazing. Two kids from small parts of the rock making it big out here. They’re the number-three team right now, and just to have something like that where it’s a really, really big game that we both get to experience and play in, it’s special, you know? I think this is something that Hawaii should look forward to and I’m very, very honored to have such great support from people back home,” said Tagovailoa.
The Crimson Tide and Tigers will kickoff from Louisiana at 2 p.m. HST on Saturday.