Kahuku's Hit Man Loves BYU

Al Afalava just got back from a weekend in Provo. The outstanding prospect thought very highly of the Provo campus. But, was the visit enough to make this islander want to trade in tropical paradise for winter in the Wasatch?

BYU is recruiting two top LDS Hawaiian prospects from Kahuku High School. One is finesse wide receiver Spencer Hafoka, and the other is a top 75 defensive back prospect affectionately known as the "Hit man."

BYU fans are now aware of the group of Hawaiian prospects, "The Hawaiian Bunch", that have made their official recruiting visits to BYU. One of whom was Al Afalava, a 6'0", 195-pound safety prospect with 4.5 40 speed.

"Oh, I loved it over there," Afalava declared. "They offered me a scholarship. Coach Mendenhall offered me but they are going to recruit other safeties, but I'm thinking about going to BYU."

Afalava is known as Kahuku's "Hit man."

"Yeah, that's what I'm known for over here. I'm the hit man," Afalava said.

Afalava joined WR Hafoka, linebacker Blaise Soares and offensive linemen Moleta and Shawn Lauvao on an official visit to Provo for an overview of the campus life. The athletes learned what is expected of them as "scholar athletes" at the LDS church school. They were also treated to a tour of BYU's new facilities.

"Unreal, man!" Afalava exclaimed about the Cougars new digs. "Way better than Oregon States, especially all the football facilities. The weight room, the trainers room, equipment room and all of them are all nice.

"Every senior on the team is graduating. The education part about BYU I like. Like even if we get hurt, they will still help us with our education and it's my church school."

Besides the environment, academics, facilities and BYU being his church school, Afalava is also related to new BYU offensive coordinator Robert Anae.

Said Afalava: "Yeah, Robert Anae. I'm related to him by marriage and we talked a lot on my recruiting trip. He told me he would take care of me if I come to BYU and he made me feel at home."

Along with Afalava, Blaise Soares, a linebacker from Castle High School and good friend of Afalava, was also taken back by his experience at Brigham Young University.

"Yeah [Soares] wants to go to BYU too," Afalava said, "but his parents want him to go to UH. He said BYU has offered him. I got to know him good because we got to play together in the All-Star game."

So how is Soares as a football player?

"Oh, he's dangerous," replied Afalava. "That guy is dangerous. I think he's the best in Hawaii. I think he's even better than Kaluka (Maiava). Kaluka played against Maui teams and they're not that tough. Them guys in Maui there not like the players here on Oahu."

Kaluka Maiava is a linebacker prospect BYU was recruiting early in the season from Baldwin High School in Maui, and has committed to USC.

"I hope Blaise (Soares) comes to BYU," said Afalava. "He's [not and LDS church] member but he likes the environment and the people. He doesn't mind the honor code and I think the honor code is good too."

Afalava and Spencer Hafoka visited Oregon State on January 7th, and it was reported he had committed to the university while on his trip there. News of the commitment to Oregon State came as a shock to Afalava. Almost as shocking as the surprise treatment he received from Oregon State coaches.

"No I didn't even tell the coach I committed," Afalava said. "I was talking to the head coach and he asked me if I like it here and I said yeah I'm interested. Then he stood up and gave me a big hug and I didn't know what he was doing. Then he took me outside and told all the coaches that I committed, so I didn‘t want to say no because he kind of put me on the spot. I didn't know what he was doing and I didn't want to say no. So Siuaki [Livai] called them and annulled it for me. Siuaki tells us he supports us as long as we are happy were we want to go and I want to go to BYU."

Afalava will take his trip to the University of Hawaii this up and coming weekend and will make a final decision on where he plans to commit possibly within the next week or two.

"I would like to take my other trips before I make a decision about committing," said Afalava. "I think I just want to take my UH trip and that's it. I'm going to cancel my Utah trip. I go to UH next week and then I'm going to make my decision."


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