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#93 Vaka Manupuna
Position: Defensive Tackle
Height: 6'1"
Weight: 285
Year: Junior
City/State: Kihei, Hawai'i
High School: St. Louis
Experience: 2 Letters

 

2005 (Sr.)—In starting all 13 games, including the Champs Sports Bowl, he enjoyed his best season in earning honorable mention all-Big 12 Conference honors from both the Associated Press and the league coaches.  The coaches selected him as the recipient of CU’s Regiment Award, given to the player with the greatest contribution with the least recognition, and he also earned his way on to CU’s prestigious Victory Club.  He had 52 tackles on the season (28 solo), with four for losses, five third down stops, seven quarterback hurries, three quarterback chasedowns (near-sacks), two fumble recoveries and two pass deflections in playing 701 snaps from scrimmage, the fourth most on defense.  He had 40 tackles over the last seven games, including nine (five solo) at Texas during the regular season to match his career high.  He also had eight tackles at Iowa State and seven at Kansas State, when he had one of his two fumble recoveries (the other was against New Mexico State).  He had two tackles, one for a loss, against Clemson in the bowl game, and he accepted an invitation to play in the Hula Bowl in his native Hawai’i, where he posted three tackles (one solo) playing for the West team.   In spring conditioning tests, he posted team bests in the squat (609 lbs.) and in the incline (390 lbs.), as well as the third highest bench press (409 lbs.).

 

2004 (Jr.)— He played in all 13 games with 12 starts, including in the Houston Bowl (deferring to senior Brandon Dabdoub for the Kansas State game, his final home game), and earned honorable mention all-Big 12 honors from the Associated Press.  In playing the fifth most snaps on defense (671), he racked up 42 tackles, including 28 solo and two-and-a-half quarterback sacks.  He had eight tackles for loss overall to go with eight third down stops, two hurries, a forced fumble (at Kansas) and a pass broken up.  Manupuna had at least three tackles in 10 games, including the final nine of the regular season, and matched his career high of five tackles in three different games: Missouri, Texas and Kansas State (all were solo stops in the UT game, his career best for unassisted tackles).  Against UTEP in the bowl game, he had two assisted tackles and a quarterback hurry.  He was one of 10 players named by the coaches to CU’s prestigious Victory Club, as one must post a winning productivity grade in at least games on the season.  He had an outstanding spring, as the coaches tabbed him as the Most Improved Defensive Player Award winner.  He had 12 tackles, three for losses, in CU’s three full scrimmages.  

 

2003 (Soph.)—He played in all 12 games, including a pair of starts (against Kansas State and No. 1 Oklahoma).  He played 314 snaps from scrimmage in racking up 11 tackles (9 solo), including two for losses, and also had four quarterback hurries and a third down stop.  He had a season high three tackles at Texas Tech (all solo stops, one for a loss), and played his most snaps, 45, against Oklahoma followed by 38 versus both Kansas State and Iowa State.  He missed six spring practices as he returned home to be with his family after the sudden death of his mother.  He had moved to offensive guard for the first portion of spring, but when he returned for the last week of practices, was shifted back to defense. 

 

2002 (Fr.-RS)—He played in 10 games including the Alamo Bowl (no starts), getting in on special teams in all 10 and playing some defensive tackle in three games.  He posted one tackle on the year, a tackle for loss at that for a couple of yards at UCLA.  He saw action for 44 snaps on defense.  He suffered a torn PCL (posterior cruciate ligament) in the final days of spring practice, but the injury didn’t require surgery.  He was attentive to a rehabilitation program for the knee, and was 100 percent by fall camp.

 

2001 (Fr.)—Redshirted; practiced the entire season at defensive tackle.

 

HIGH SCHOOL—As a senior, he earned first-team all-state honors from both the Honolulu Advertiser and Star-Bulletin.  SuperPrep named him to its All-Far West team, ranked as the No. 72 player overall in the region, and he also earned first-team all-Interscholastic League of Honolulu (ILH) honors for a second straight year.  As a senior, he registered 37 solo tackles (about 60 overall), with four fumble recoveries, three forced fumbles and three quarterback sacks.  As a junior, when he also earned all-state mention, he was in on 28 solo tackles, with seven tackles for loss (three sacks), two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries.  Started every game his last two years in high school at defensive tackle.   He moved to Oahu prior to his junior year; he had also started every game at defensive tackle as a sophomore at Maui High School.  Top game as a senior came against Samoana of American Samoa, when he had seven tackles, three for losses, a fumble recovery and a sack.  Against Samien the same year, he had 10 tackles, two sacks and a fumble recovery.  St. Louis was 13-1 his junior and senior seasons and the ILH champions under legendary coach Cal Lee, winning the state title his junior year but missing out on a repeat championship his senior year (lost to Kahuku in the finals). 

 

ACADEMICS— He graduated in December 2005 with a bachelor’s degree in ethnic studies.

 

PERSONAL— Born June 30, 1982 in Honolulu, Hawai’i.  His hobbies include studying the history of the people and islands of the South Pacific, basketball, listening to music (especially Polynesian and reggae), and spending time at the beach.  He is also adept at husking—coconuts.  Given first name is Lafaele.  Basically a life-long resident of Maui (his family is in Kihei), he attended high school on Oahu and stayed with an older brother. (First name is pronounced vah-ka; last name pronounced ma-na-pooh-na).

 


Season


G


Plays

Tackles
UT  AT--TOT


TFL


Sacks


3DS


Hurr


FR


FF


PBU


Int

2002

3

44

   1     0--    1

1- 2

0- 0

0

0

0

0

0

0

2003

12

314

   9     2--  11

2- 6

0- 0

1

4

0

0

0

0

2004 12

671

28   14--   42

8-26

2.5-12

8

2

0

1

1

0

2005 12

701

28    24--  52

4-10

0-0

5

7

2

0

2

0

Totals 39

1730

66  40--  106

15-44

2.5-12

14

13

2

1

3

0

     

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