Justin “J.T.” Turner, a former 5-star cornerback from Ohio, has given a conditional verbal commitment to the Warriors.
Turner made his commitment this afternoon, shortly before leaving Hawaii after completing his recruiting trip, but is awaiting the status of the UH coaching staff. Turner is close to Tony Tuioti, UH’s defensive line coach.
Turner was considered to be one of Ohio’s top high school players as a senior. He signed with Michigan, but left after failing to get along with then-head coach Rich Rodriguez. He attended West Virginia for a semester before enrolling at Scottsdale (Ariz.) Junior College. He is 6 feet 3, 200 pounds and runs 40 yards in under 4.5 seconds.
UH cornerback Mike Edwards, also from Ohio, was instrumental in Turner’s decision.
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Even including the injuries and several gritty individual performances, by all measures, this was a disappointing season for the Warriors.
Despite entering the year with two returning starters on offense — both of whom ended the year injured — there was optimism, as reflected in the Warriors being picked first in WAC preseason polls.
There were Warriors who fought the good fight. Long-snapper Luke Ingram played the entire season with a shoulder that likely will require offseason surgery. The same for cornerback Mike Edwards. The linebackers also endured injuries to play every snap yesterday. Quarterback David Graves, wideout Trevor Davis and slotback Justin Clapp were force-fed into starting roles.
The Warriors crafted a list of goals, the most basic was to finish with a winning record. In a glum post-game interview, head coach Greg McMackin acknowledged the Warriors did not meet their goals.
McMackin has a little more than a year remaining on a five-year contract whose terms were reached in January 2008. His situation will be discussed soon, although no meetings are scheduled for today. UH President MRC Greenwood, who is expected to be involved in the evaluation, is attending meetings on the mainland.
The seniors should be congratulated for their efforts on the field and in the classroom. Every player has either graduated or is on track to earning a degree. Developing players (Brian Clay, Tavita Woodard, Craig Cofer, Beau Yap, Desmond Dean, Stump Godfrey) offer optimism.
The future of the program should gain clarity, either way, this week.
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Prayers for our good friend, Las Vegas/Rasu Begasu, who is suffering from a critical medical condition. He is a kind and generous man who always maintains the aloha spirit in the desert. He also has been a source of wisdom and, more importantly, good humor, especially during the blog’s after-hours period.