Fa’aope Lalo’ulu’s game is larger than life

For Life

There’s not many things scarier or more intimidating than Tiger Woods in his prime, stalking a long putt. But there is one specific monster of Hawaii high school football who’s been giving opposing defensive linemen nightmares. 

At 6-foot-7, 390 lbs, Halloween costumes that fit have been hard to come by for this Saint-turned-Governor.

Senior offensive lineman Fa’aope Lalo’ulu did make a return this season, going from the ILH’s now non-existent Saint Francis to Farrington of the OIA. His 2018 undefeated season with the Saints ended abruptly after the use of an ineligible player. Then, the school closed.

“It sucked for all of us because prior to that we found out we got kicked out of the football league after our 9-0 season and we were hoping to come back and ruin it all all over again,” Lalo’ulu said. “That was everybody’s reaction, just shock because we were ready to come back next year and take it all.”

That cohesive team was scattered around Oahu’s prep football landscape.

“We just made our last memories together because we all knew we weren’t all going to be going the same route,” he said. “So we just spent our last days together and made the most of it. Bubba from Campbell. Just seeing him all over again. Different team. It was different. But he’s still my brother.” 

Lalo’ulu returned home to play his senior season for Farrington. And it was like he never left.

“That’s family right there to me. Feels like home,” Lalo’ulu said. “It’s a brotherhood that will never be broken. They welcomed me with open arms. They didn’t treat me like a new kid. Just a regular day of ‘Sup Ope!’ Nothing much.”

The Govs were happy for the massive size upgrade at offensive line. And five games into the season, they moved him from tackle to left guard.

He also expects to play next year as a freshman for the Oregon Ducks. It’ll be a change in college, playing against guys more his size.

“Level playing field. Everybody is as big as me,” he said. “As strong as me. Just gotta be stronger.”

Despite Farrington’s season ending last week in the OIA Open Division playoffs, the winding road of high school football has prepared him for next year on the mainland.

“I grew and made new friendships and built a better bond with new people,” Lalo’ulu said. 

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