Five Ducks On Polynesian College Football POY Watch List

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HONOLULU — The Oregon football program saw five players named to the preseason watch list for the 2022 Polynesian College Football Player of the Year Award by the Polynesian Football Hall of Fame on Thursday – Popo Aumavae, Malaesala Aumavae-Laulu, Mase Funa, Noah Sewell and Taki Taimani.
 
The award is presented annually to the most outstanding college football player of Polynesian ancestry that epitomizes great ability and integrity. The 2022 watch list is composed of 85 players from 43 different FBS schools. 
 
All five Ducks are on the preseason list for the second year in a row. Sewell was a finalist for the award in 2021, becoming the fourth finalist in Oregon history and first since his brother, Penei Sewell, took home the honor in 2019. Marcus Mariota also won the award in 2014 with the Ducks, and DeForest Buckner was a finalist in 2015.
 
Five finalists for the 2022 Polynesian College Football Player of the Year Award will be unveiled on December 1 and the winner will be announced on December 15. The presentation of the award will be held during the Polynesian Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Week Celebration Dinner (January 21, 2023) at the Sheraton Waikiki, and they will also be recognized during the Polynesian Bowl (January 20, 2023).
 
DT Popo Aumavae
» 2021 AP and PFF Pac-12 all-conference first team.
» Led all Pac-12 interior defensive linemen in 2021 with an 81.3 overall defensive grade by PFF.
» Career-high 36 tackles in 2021, including 16 solo and 3.0 TFLs.
» 38 career games played at Oregon, making 66 total tackles, 9.0 TFLs and 3.5 sacks.
 
OL Malaesala Aumavae-Laulu
» 2020 coaches Pac-12 all-conference honorable mention.
» Played 710 total offensive snaps in 2021, all at right tackle.
» Helped Oregon rank in the top 25 nationally with 202.36 rushing yards per game and tied for sixth with 36 rushing TDs.
» Has played in 222 games for Oregon over three seasons since transferring from Navarro College.
 
OLB Mase Funa
» Started 12 games in 2021, making 28 tackles, one TFL and one fumble recovery.
» Credited by PFF with 13 total QB pressures, nine hurries and four QB hits in 2021.
» 85 total tackles with 13.0 TFLs and 4.0 sacks in 33 career games for the Ducks since 2019.
» Ranked third among Pac-12 freshmen in 2019 in both sacks (4.0) and TFLs (8.5).
 
ILB Noah Sewell
» Consensus preseason first-team all-American entering his third season.
» Led Oregon and ranked second in the Pac-12 with 114 total tackles in 2021.
» Second among Ducks in 2021 with career-highs of 8.5 TFLs and 4.0 sacks.
» Became the first Duck ever to be named a Butkus Award semifinalist in 2021.
» 159 total tackles in just 21 career games with seven double-digit tackle performances.
 
DL Taki Taimani
» Entering his first season at Oregon after transferring from Washington.
» Played in 11 of 12 games for UW in 2021, leading defensive linemen with 43 tackles.
» Ranked fifth among Pac-12 interior D-linemen with a 72.0 overall grade by PFF.
» 71 total tackles with 1.5 TFLs in 29 career games.


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Nate Krueger

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