SAMSON SATELEApril 28, 2007
University of Hawaii Warriors
Kaneohe, O`ahu, Hawaii
Kailua High School
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The Warriors’ coaching staff was concerned about protecting their star quarterback, Colt Brennan, entering the 2006 season. With starter Derek Faavi having graduated, there was a huge vacancy to fill at the center position. Satele (pronounced (sah-TELL-ay) approached head coach June Jones about moving to the pivot from left offensive guard. Not only did Samson solidify the Hawaii front wall, the versatile blocker quickly established himself as the premier pass protector in college football at his new position. With his raw power and nimble feet, pro scouts are comparing him to former San Francisco 49ers great, Jesse Sapolu.
Satele was an All-State first-team selection by the Honolulu Star-Bulletin and The Honolulu Advertiser as a senior at Kailua High School. He was also named first-team All-League and earned All-American honors from Prep Star, a recruiting service that rated Samson as one of the top twenty offensive linemen in the West. He was the recipient of the Top Offensive Lineman Award at the 2001 Maverick Football clinic, after leading the team to a share of the league title.
Samson also lettered three times in basketball. He was chosen All-State in hoops three consecutive seasons, adding All-League accolades as a junior and senior. He was also named the team’s Most Valuable Player his junior campaign. Satele added three letters in track, competing in the shot put and discus. He was also named the school's Athlete of the Year for 2000-01.
Satele enrolled at Hawaii in 2002, spending the season performing on the scout team. He moved into the starting lineup immediately, lining up for the season opener at left tackle before moving to left guard for the rest of the fourteen-game schedule. He registered 48 knockdown blocks and allowed only one quarterback sack. For that performance, he earned second-team All-Western Athletic Conference and Scripps/FWAA first-team Fresh-man All-American honors.
Samson would go on to start every game that he played in for the Warriors. He lined up at left guard in ten contests and at center for three games, producing 42 knockdowns with only one sack in 2004, picking up All-WAC second-team accolades. In 2005, he stayed at left guard for all twelve games. He registered 32 knockdowns, allowed two sacks and graded 86% for blocking consistency while garnering All-WAC first-team recognition.
Having moved back to center in 2006, Satele was an All-American first-team pick by The NFL Draft Report. He was named All-WAC first-team, as he produced 65 knockdowns for an offense that generated 559.2 yards per game, paving the way for a unit that generated 84 touchdowns.
What was even more impressive was that he held his main assignment to no tackles in seven of the fourteen games he played in. In 53 games at Hawaii, all starts, Samson was credited 177 knockdown blocks.
Satele holds the school career-record by starting 53 consecutive games for the Warriors… That streak was the longest among all active players in the NCAA Division 1-A ranks in 2006…Did not allow an opponent to register any statistics in seven games during his first year as a full-time starter at center in 2006…A colorful character, Samson “lives up” to his first name, as he has not had his hair cut since enrolling at Hawaii in 2002.
All-American first-team selection by The NFL Draft Report…Rated the best center prospect for the 2007 NFL Draft by nfldraftscout.com…Consensus All-Western Athletic Conference first-team choice…Served as one of the team’s tri-captains. Head coach June Jones said Satele was the right choice for that leadership role, stating, “Samson has asserted himself in a leadership role this year through his workouts and on the field. He’s trying to be a winner. He’s a good kid, and a very powerful player.”…Satele bypassed entering the 2006 NFL Draft to return to the team, moving from left guard to fill a huge vacancy at center…Fresno State’s Kyle Young was regarded as the WAC’s best center entering the season, but Satele’s performance far surpassed his counterpart. Samson kept Young’s picture in his locker for “motivation.” “He had a lot at stake
(coming back),” Jones said. “He had a very good season. Samson is all I thought he would be, and more.”…Assistant offensive line coach Dennis McKnight chimed in, saying, “Sam, for having moved inside and playing his third position in four years, has done a phenomenal job at center. He makes all the calls. He’s so smart and we could not imagine where we would be this year without him.”…Satele led what many pro scouts felt was the best offensive line in college football…He helped the offense win the offensive “triple crown,” as the warriors led the nation in total offense (559.21 ypg), passing offense (441.29 ypg) and scoring (46.86 ppg)…The team’s 559.21 yards in total offense rank second in NCAA Division 1-A history, topped only by Houston’s average of 624.9 yards in 1989…Finished the season with a career-high 82 knockdowns/key blocks, including 24 touchdown-resulting blocks, grading 87.4% for blocking consistency…Satele did not allow any tackles in seven contests and gave up only one quarterback pressure and two stops behind the line of scrimmage in fourteen games.
All-Western Athletic Conference first-team selection…Started all year at left offensive guard, grading 86% for blocking consistency while coming up with 32 knockdowns, en route to helping an offense that generated 5,714 yards…Allowed two quarterback sacks and three pressures on 578 pass plays…Part of a unit that ranked second in the nation in passing offense, averaging 384.25 yards per game and finished eleventh nationally with an average of 476.17 yards per game in total offense…Produced a string of three-straight games where he did not allow his assignment to register any tackles (New Mexico State, San Jose State, Fresno State).
Satele earned All-Western Athletic Conference second-team honors…He started every game for the Warriors, lining up at left guard in ten contests and at center in three others… Led the team with 42 knockdown blocks, including ten that resulted in touchdowns…The offense ranked second in the nation with an average of 384.25 yards per game passing and finished ninth in scoring with an average of 35.92 points.
Second-team All-WAC selection…Member of the Scripps/Football Writers Association Freshman All-American first-team…Warrior Club Award winner…Started all fourteen games, lining up at left tackle in the season opener vs. Appalachian State before shifting to left guard for the rest of the schedule…Registered a team-high 48 knockdowns, as he allowed only one sack (vs. Houston) in 754 pass attempts...Compiled a career-high nine knockdowns at Louisiana Tech.
Redshirted as a freshman.
Attended Kailua (Hi.) High School, playing football for head coach Darren Johnson…All-State first-team selection by the Honolulu Star-Bulletin and The Honolulu Advertiser as a senior…Named first-team All-League and earned All-American honors from Prep Star, a recruiting service that rated Samson as one of the top twenty offensive linemen in the West…Recipient of the Top Offensive Lineman Award at the 2001 Maverick Football clinic, after leading the team to a share of the league title…Lettered three times in basketball… Chosen All-State in hoops three consecutive seasons, adding All-League accolades as a junior and senior…Named the team’s Most Valuable Player his junior campaign…Added three letters in track, competing in the shot put and discus…Named the school's Athlete of the Year for 2000-01.
Graduated in December, 2006, with a degree in Sociology…Son of Norine and Faalata Satele…Nephew of former Hawaii Warrior and San Diego Chargers linebacker Alvis Satele and former Rainbow Wahine volleyball player Lee Ann Pestana…Cousins, defensive end Melila Purcell (2003-06) and offensive guard Hercules Satele (2004-present) were team-mates of Samson’s on the Hawaii football team…Samson lives up to his first name, as the lineman has not had his hair cut since enrolling at Hawaii in 2002…Born 11/29/84 in Kailua, O`ahu, Hawaii…Resides in Honolulu. Hawaii.