2019 Polynesian Bowl primer #PolyBowl2k19
The 2019 Polynesian Bowl kicks off Saturday, Jan. 19, at 12 a.m. ET/7 p.m. HST on CBS Sports Network. In its third rendition, the game will pit several of the best high school recruits in the country against each other — Team Mauka vs. Team Makai — inside Honolulu’s Aloha Stadium. 247Sports will be on the ground from the Aloha State all week, from registration and check-in, to each practice all the way through the game Saturday night under the lights. We’ll have plenty of interviews, top performer lists, video highlights and more from the island. Before then, here’s a quick primer: WHO'S PLAYING IN THE GAME? Forty-one players in the 247Sports Composite rankings are on the roster, including 15 of the top 100 prospects. Included in that mix are Composite five-stars Trey Sanders, a running back who signed with Alabama, and Ishmael Sopsher, a defensive lineman from Louisiana who has yet to come off the board. In addition, quarterback Gunner Cruz(Washington State), linebacker Orin Patu(California), kicker Evan Davis (Toledo) and offensive lineman Julius Buelow (Washington) have received waivers to play in the game despite already having enrolled in college. Alabama signee Taulia Tagovailoa and LSU signee Siaki Ika are set to enroll at their respective schools after returning home from the game. On Monday night following player check-in, a draft party will be held that will split the two teams, Team Mauka (Mountain) and Team Makai (Ocean). Mike Bellotti, the winningest football coach in Oregon history and a College Football Hall of Fame inductee, will serve as head coach for Team Makai. Team Mauka will be coached by Jim Zorn, who résumé includes 12 years as an NFL quarterback and 16 years as an NFL coach. Haloti Ngata (Philadelphia Eagles) and Juju Smith-Schuster (Pittsburgh Steelers) will serve as the game's honorary captains. Here's the full roster for the 2019 Polynesian Bowl. WHO'S COMMITTING DURING THE GAME?
Kahuku (Hawaii) four-star offensive lineman Enokk Vimahi is scheduled to choose between Notre Dame, Oklahoma and USC. He takes an official visit this weekend to Norman to get his first up-close look at the Sooners. The 247Sports Crystal Ball favors the Trojans. Gilbert (Ariz.) Williams Field four-star defensive back Noa Pola-Gates has a final three of Arizona State, Nebraska and USC, and took official visits to each of those programs prior to the early signing period. The Cornhuskers have been trending in the Crystal Ball and currently half of the 16 total votes. McDonough School (Md.) four-star defensive tackle D'Von Ellies is also set to reveal his choice live during the game, with Penn State and USC believed to be the top two. The Nittany Lions hold all 13 votes in the Crystal Ball. Lehi (Utah) Skyridge three-star lineman Logan Sagapolu, the top-rated center prospect in the West region, will announce between a top three of BYU, Oregon and Utah. The Ducks have been the perceived favorite for a couple months. There is a chance that Carlsbad, Calif., four-star athlete Asa Turner also makes an announcement between a final two of Notre Dame and Washington. WHAT ARE THE BIG RECRUITING STORYLINES? With the Early Signing Period, there are a number of players who not only committed early, but already signed. Washington leads the way with the most commits/signees in the game, with nine, including Hawaiian natives Faatui Tuitele and Julius Buelow. Oregon and Stanford each hold seven commits/signees, Alabama and USC have five, LSU has four, and Oklahoma, Utah and Washington State each have three. There are several un-committed prospects that figure to be busy in the coming weeks leading up to the traditional signing day in February. Aside from the aforementioned Sopsher, Vimahi and Pola-Gates, four-star linebackers Henry To'oto'o and Daniel Heimuli are two other players in the 247Sports Composite rankings that have yet to reveal a college decision. HOW CAN I FOLLOW ALONG? In addition to watching on Saturday, Jan. 19, you should be plugged in all week with 247Sports. We’ll have live threads throughout check-in and practices. If you haven’t subscribed to one of our localized sites covering your favorite team, consider doing so here. WHAT ELSE IS THERE TO KNOW? Want to see what the players will be wearing during the Polynesian Bowl? Check out the Nike outfitted uniforms here: Polynesian Bowl reveals uniforms for this year's game And the helmets for the game, sponsored by Riddell, incorporate the Polynesian culture with the latest in safety-enhanced head protection. Check them out here: Polynesian Bowl reveals helmets for this year's game Several top prospects in next year's class have already committed to play in the 2020 Polynesian Bowl. Check out the early roster for the 2020 game here: Polynesian Bowl roster for 2020 off to fast start