Honolulu, HI (August 19, 2021) – The Polynesian Football Hall of Fame announced today the 2021 Watch List for the Polynesian College Football Player of the Year Award. The Award is presented annually to the most outstanding college football player of Polynesian ancestry that epitomizes great ability and integrity. The Watch List is composed of 63 players from 31 different FBS schools.
Former University of Oregon, and current Las Vegas Raiders Quarterback, Marcus Mariota was selected as the inaugural recipient of the Award in 2014; former University of Notre Dame, and current Baltimore Ravens Offensive Lineman, Ronnie Stanley received the award in 2015; former University of Colorado Quarterback Sefo Liufau received the award in 2016; former Washington State, and current Minnesota Vikings Defensive End Hercules Mata`afa received the award in 2017; former University of Alabama Quarterback, and current Miami Dolphins Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa received the award in 2018 & 2019; former University of Oregon Offensive Tackle, and current Detroit Lions Offensive Lineman, Penei Sewell received the award in 2019; and former University of Southern California, and current San Francisco 49ers Safety, Talanoa Hufanga, and former Brigham Young University, and current New York Jets Quarterback, Zach Kapono Wilson received the award in 2020.
“The participation, prestige and excellence of Polynesian players continues to grow in college football,” said Jesse Sapolu, Polynesian Football Hall of Fame Chairman, Co-Founder and Inductee. “This award allows us to showcase the very best in our community.”
The winner of the 2021 Polynesian College Football Player of the Year Award will be announced on December 14. Five finalists will be unveiled on November 30. The presentation of the Award will be held during the Polynesian Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Week Celebration Dinner (January 21, 2022) at the Sheraton Waikiki, and they will also be recognized at halftime of the Polynesian Bowl (January 22, 2022).
The Watch List candidates have been selected based on past performance and future potential. Additions to the list may be made as the 2021 season progresses. The finalists and winner will be chosen by the Polynesian Football Hall of Fame Selection Committee which includes former NFL Player and Inaugural Inductee Jack “The Throwin’ Samoan” Thompson (Chairman), Coaches Ron McBride and Dick Vermeil, former NFL Player and Inaugural Inductee Olin Kreutz, Inaugural Inductee and past NFLPA president Kevin Mawae, former NFL Player and Class of 2015 Inductee Ray Schoenke, ESPN Sportscaster Neil Everett, and NFL Network commentator Steve Wyche.
2021 POLYNESIAN COLLEGE FOOTBALL
PLAYER OF THE YEAR WATCH LIST
About the Polynesian Football Hall of Fame: The Polynesian Football Hall of Fame honors Polynesia’s greatest players, coaches, and contributors. Its permanent home is located at the Polynesian Cultural Center and was established in 2013 by Super Bowl Champions Jesse Sapolu and Ma’a Tanuvasa. Other board members include Troy Polamalu, Vai Sikahema, June Jones and Reno Mahe. www.PolynesianFootballHOF.org
About the Polynesian Bowl: The Polynesian Bowl is held annually during the Polynesian Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Week and is televised LIVE on CBS Sports Network. Major sponsors include adidas, BodyArmor, CrossCountry Mortgage, Friends of Hawai’i Charities, Hawaiian Airlines, Hawaii Building & Construction Trades Council, Hawai’i News Now, Hawai’i Tourism Authority, Sheraton Princess Kaiulani Hotel and Riddell. www.PolynesianBowl.com