By Ian Scheuring, Hawaii News Now, Sports Anchor / Reporter
HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – The line-up of quarterbacks June Jones has mentored in his career is filled with some of the biggest names in Hawaii football history. If he has it his way, Jones will soon be able to add another name to that list, this time at the high school level.
“Well, I think Taulia has a chance to be a really really fine quarterback,” said the Kapolei offensive coordinator. “He’s very accurate with the ball. I think as long as he stays humble, as long as he does the things that he’s supposed to do, and just go through his progressions, he’s gonna complete a lot of footballs.”
For Taulia Tagovailoa, who started games last season as a freshman for Kapolei, few coaches in the country can provide the type of tutelage he has already received under Jones.
“What more can I ask for? He’s the best coach, he’s been through every level of the game,” said Tagovailoa. “He’s made it easier for me to read and see a lot of defenses and make me focus on one part instead of focusing on the whole defense.”
Head coach Darren Hernandez says Jones’ influence extends well beyond his young quarterback.
“It’s been great. He’s a calming influence, he doesn’t raise his voice. His words have a lot of meaning, so the kids, and the coaches, frankly, everyone listens to what he has to say, and we’re excited about what we can do here.”
Be it at Hawaii, SMU or Kapolei, Jones says the key to this team’s success remains the same.
“Everybody has to commit that we want to win, and we want to be at a different level than we’ve ever been at this school. And as long as they commit to that, and stay together and hang together, it’ll happen.”