Off to a 2-and-0 start to the season, the University of Hawaii football team will return to the field on Saturday, facing a third consecutive Pac-12 opponent as the Rainbow Warriors will draw the 23rd-ranked Washington Huskies in Seattle.
The Warriors continued preparations for the big game on Wednesday morning where first-year linebacker Darius Muasau is expected to once again play a part in the defensive strategy.
The linebacking core, which has already lost returning starter Penei Pavihi for the remainder of the season, and was without the services of Jeremiah Pritchard in UH’s win over Oregon State last week, got two tackles including one for a loss from the Muasau.
Per UH team rules, true freshman are not made available to the media, but his head coach had lots to say about the 2019 Polynesian Bowl All-Star.
“He’s not scared for the big moment. You’re talking about an 18 year old who got kind of thrown into that role probably sooner than most of us expected, but he attacked training camp the right way which made him ready for that moment,” said head coach Nick Rolovich.
“Now you got an 18 year old local kid that is not scared of the biggest stage that our state can be put on, and now he’s got to do it on the road.”
A finalist for KHON’s Cover2 Defensive Player of the Year award, Muasau recorded 38.5 tackles, one sack, and two interceptions in eight games played for the Trojans, who finished runner-up for the 2018 Open Division state title. He also played a significant part of the Trojan squad that captured the 2016 Division I state title.
“He loves football, he loves playing football, and I think he’s very focused on what it’s going to take for him to be a successful college football player. That doesn’t always happen for freshmen. He has really come in with the right mindset,” added Rolovich.
I think that comes back to how well he was prepared in high school, and his family. What they prepared him for in this opportunity. Not just you got a scholarship, go to college, but this is a real opportunity to really have a great four-five year experience.”
The ‘Bows and the Huskies will face-off on Saturday at Husky Stadium. Kick-off is 4:30 p.m. PT (1:30 p.m. HT) and will be televised nationally on the Pac-12 Network.