Tuiasoa Open to Everything

Ryan Tuiasoa

Honolulu (HI) Punahou athlete Ryan Tuiasoa transitioned from defense to offense this season and is keeping optimistic about the future...

In many ways, the season was a success for Honolulu (HI) Punahou athlete Ryan Tuiasoa. He and his teammates made it to the state championship game last weekend and Tuiasoa put up some pretty impressive stats, especially considering it was his first season to ever play running back.

Tuiasoa rushed for 936 yards and seventeen touchdowns, averaging six yards per carry. He also racked up 325 receiving yards and four touchdowns, with an average of 20.3 yards per catch.

"I usually play linebacker, but this year my team had me switch over to running back, so that's where I've been playing. It was hard at first, but I ended up racking up a bunch of yards and scoring touchdowns, so it actually went pretty smoothly," he said..

Though he adjusted quite well to the offensive side of the ball, no longer playing linebacker did have some effects.

"I got hurt in the middle of last season when I was still at linebacker, so I didn't get to play a whole lot last year, towards the second half of the season, and because I transitioned to running back this season, recruiting has been a little slow. My only offer right now is Weber State.

"The switch was difficult as far as recruiting goes, because that's where my attention was, but I'm a team player and in that sense, it worked out," he said.

The 6-foot, 215-pound prospect is staying optimistic and is keeping all options open.

"I'm very open. I'll look into whoever comes and talks with me. I want coaches to know that I am a versatile player, that I was able to make the switch from linebacker to running back shows a lot. As a running back, I'm multi dimensional. I don't only run the ball, I also do a lot of receiving and am a powerful runner. I'm also a big guy. I'm versatile," he said.

Even Tuiasoa isn't quite sure at what position he'd play in college.

"I really don't know at this point as to what position I would play. That was originally the plan, to play linebacker, but I'll do whatever coaches want me to do. I feel like I could play either," he said.

There are a few programs that are standing out, including a childhood favorite.

"I'm definitely interested in Utah. I was born in Utah before moving to Hawaii, so I have been raised watching Utah and being a fan of the program. I have a lot of family up there. Also, their move to the Pac-12 was really interesting to me. It's just one of those things, you're a little kid growing up watching them, and it's just a dream school for me.

"I like Utah, UCLA, Colorado, all those programs. I'm interested in anyone who is interested in me," he said.

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