It took 18 months for University of Hawaii football player Veni Manu to make a first impression.
Manu, a defensive end and 2009 Mililani High graduate, was among more than 20 first-year Warriors to report to training camp yesterday.
The remainder of the Warriors on the 105-player roster for training camp, including the dozen or so who joined in January, will report today. The first practice is scheduled for tomorrow afternoon.
"It feels good to make it," said Manu, who took the circuitous route through red tape and paperwork after signing a letter of intent in February 2009.
Manu did not attend UH during the 2009 fall semester while attempting to earn a higher SAT score. He achieved that goal, then waited to be cleared to play for the Warriors.
"I'm happy to be a Warrior," Manu said. "I'm nervous, but it feels good to be able to take the next step."
Manu's ongoing goal is to regain the 40 pounds he lost while sitting out the past year. Manu, who is 6-foot-3, weighed 245 when he signed with UH 18 months ago. He was down to 205 pounds two months ago, but now is up to 215.
Manu and the other newcomers attended an orientation session yesterday on academics and the football-related schedule, met with academic counselors and the life-skills coordinator, and toured the campus.