First in a three-part series on the impact of Samoan players on American football. Part II coming Wednesday: the rise of high school quarterback TC McCartney -- son of the late Sal Aunese and grandson of ex-Buffaloes coach Bill McCartney.
Troy Polamalu wanted to sign autographs after last week's Pro Bowl in Honolulu. But 5-0 said no.
"Police told him he couldn't go out there because he was getting mobbed on his way out," said his uncle, Kennedy Pola, running backs coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars. "He had to go back to the hotel."
Welcome to a new era in this ongoing friendly football takeover. Samoans as rock stars.
Pacific Islanders' influence -- specifically those tracing ancestry back to Samoa and its vicinity -- has been well documented. The group of five volcanic islands -- combined about the size of Washington D.C. -- produces more NFL players per capita than any racial group. A Samoan kid is 40 times more likely to play in the NFL than his U.S. counterpart. There are more than 200 such players in college football.
Thanks to Polamalu and others, they are more than curiosities. They are becoming a foundation. Can a marketing campaign be far behind for football's perfect warriors? Not only are Polynesian males known for being great athletes, their character might shine through even more.
"Family is a vital part of who we are," said Mike Tuiasosopo, University of Arizona defensive line coach and uncle of Oakland Raiders backup quarterback Marques Tuiasosopo. "Fitting into a team is very easy. If you have us, we're pretty loyal people. We're loyal to the cause, loyal to the team, loyal to the family."
To read the rest of the article follow the link: Samoan influence being felt at every level.