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Student Voice of Kalaepōhaku

The Collegian

Student Voice of Kalaepōhaku

The Collegian

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It’s a New Chapter in Crusader Football

Its a New Chapter in Crusader Football

New Head Coach Tupu Alualu is making a change by embracing the glory days of Crusader football and looking to the future, along with new additions Coach Jack Tufono and current starting quarterback Nainoa Lopes. 

Alualu is now the head coach for the Crusaders after previously serving as the running back coach. He recently shared his thoughts on this new role. “It means a lot, being an alumnus of the school,” Alualu adds. “We just have to continue to do our best. We have been behind the last four years. I am blessed for this opportunity to be here.”

Combining the old with the new is key for Alualu. “Well, we are trying to bring back the old school and the new school,” adds Alualu. “We got coach La’anui, the Defensive line coach, who’s doing our strength and conditioning.” Alualu Adds, ” With the knowledge of all the position coaches that I hired, we are just trying to get more detail with all the different positions and all the kids that are coming in.”

From the field to the classroom, Alualu expects nothing but the best from his players.  “Academics have a Big Role as I preach to the kids to go home, love their parents, do their studies at home, and do the extra things,” Alualu adds. “I tell the kids to get off the video games and Come to school ready to go just like they would prepare when they go on the field.”

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Alualu believes that there’s more to life than football.  “Football is not everything,” he explains, and “what we do here as coaches is to teach the kids life lessons as well, [like]  being respectful to the teachers… before they come down to the field.” 

As the new head coach, Alualu has several goals for the team, regardless of where they may go at the next level. “Our goal is to get them recruited; not everyone will go Division 1, but they gotta kinda know where they’re at,” Alualu adds. “All of my coaches are not just coaches; they are also educators. I told the kids that there is no way that you are competing over here if you aren’t competing in the class.”

There were some changes that Alualu had to make to set a good example. “Like I told the kids, I gave my life to God, and I don’t expect them to do that you know after my experience of my life.” 

Alualu has big shoes to fill, and he expresses how much of a blessing this opportunity is. “It’s a big program and a big helm, you know, and like I said, I’m just very blessed to get that job.” Alualu adds, “The plan is God’s plan: to do the right thing in life, be respectful, stay humble, and be a good person in everything we do. I expect them to win.” 

Starting quarterback Nainoa Lopes has been putting in a lot of work and has set some goals for himself.  “My personal and team goals are to get everyone in each and every game and score almost every drive,” explains Lopes. “Executing my plays and reading the defense as best as possible.”

Being a quarterback also requires great leadership. Lopes speaks on how he can be a leader and be the best for his team. “The aspects are being a team leader and showing an example for each person on the field to always push and work hard,” Lopes adds. “Getting in the weight room five times a week and always staying calm when my coach is yelling at me.”

Lopes speaks on how the team feels about Alualu as the new Head Coach. “The team was very excited about Coach Tupu being a head coach and having a better coach to win us states or get there,” Lopes also adds. “I plan to always keep in contact with him whenever I’m leaving and arriving at practice and whenever I skip practice.”

Coach Jack Tufono is in his second year coaching at Saint Louis and has been appointed as the head Offensive Line coach. He brings with him some experience and changes that may occur. “There are some things that we will keep within our program that we liked, but also some things that we definitely need to change to be successful.”

Tufono has some experience with Former Head Coach Ron Lee. “I appreciate Coach Ron for giving me the opportunity to coach with him last season because it allowed me to take a look at what we can improve both on and off the football field to help us be successful.”

Tufono speaks on his relationship with Alualu, “I have enjoyed my experience thus far with Coach Tupu as the new head coach,” Tufono adds. “I appreciate how he is trying to build a winning culture through discipline, respect, and efficiency within the Saint Louis football program.”

Tufono was a former ASU offensive lineman, Tufono talks about what influenced his coaching for the Offensive Line. “There are some things that we will keep within our program that we liked but also some things that we definitely need to change to be successful.”

Bringing multiple ideas to become a winning team is key, Tufono speaks on what he will bring to the table. “One thing I bring to the offensive line this year is from my experiences at ASU,” Tufono adds “At the division, one level, we watch a lot of film of practice, drills, and games in order for us to make corrections.”

Tufono adds to what he brings to the table. “I noticed that at the high school level, a lot of coaches don’t properly watch film and most of the time it’s a waste of time because they are confusing the players.”

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About the Contributor
Kauna'oa Kamakawiwo'ole
Kauna'oa Kamakawiwo'ole, Staff Writer
Kauna’oa Kamakawiwoole is a Staff Writer for The Collegian. Kamakawiwoole, who is well-known around the school and a Crusader since the eighth grade.   As the starting quarterback for the Varsity Football Team, he is respected by his peers. As a highly regarded student-athlete, Kamakawiwoole is “planning on going to college and finishing…”  He is keeping his options open as to where he will commit to in the future for college.  Although he is “not sure yet” where he wants to attend, he will surely turn out to be a “winning lottery ticket” for one lucky college.

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