Tua Tagovailoa

Tua TagovailoaTuanigamanuolepola “Tua” Tagovailoa (born March 2, 1998) is an American football quarterback for the Alabama Crimson Tide. He was born and raised in Hawaii. Tagovailoa, the oldest of four children in a Samoan family, grew up with an intense interest in football. In a 2015 story in Sports Illustrated, his parents recalled that he slept with a football under his arm as a small child. During Pop Warner games when he was age 8, when his peers could typically throw a football little more than 10 yards, he routinely threw passes more than 30 yards. He was slow to grow into his body, but according to his high school coaches, “his Samoan genes finally kicked in” at about age 12.
His main inspiration during his youth was his grandfather Seu, who was respected enough in the local Samoan community that he was regularly addressed as “Chief”. Seu believed that Tua would eventually grow into a football star, and he requested that Tua visit him after every game to give him a report, no matter the time of day, with Tua once visiting at 3:00 am. Tua was also pushed by his father Galu, a former junior-college player who returned to Hawaii to help support the family.
Tua faced a crisis in the summer of 2014 when his grandfather unexpectedly died, and briefly considered quitting football until he and his father agreed that Tua could best honor Seu by continuing to play. He was ranked as the number one high school player in the state of Hawaii of the Class of 2017 and attended Saint Louis School in Honolulu, the same school as Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Mariota. Mariota served as a mentor to him when they were growing up in Hawaii. Tagovailoa was backup to Alabama quarterback Jalen Hurts throughout the 2017 season, but he got to see significant playing time due to a couple of blowout victories for the Crimson Tide. On September 9, he made his collegiate debut against Fresno State in a home game at Bryant–Denny Stadium. In the 41–10 victory, he finished 6-of-9 for 64 yards and his first career passing touchdown, which was a 16-yard pass to wide receiver Henry Ruggs III. On September 23, in a 59–0 victory over Vanderbilt, he got more playing time and recorded 103 passing yards and two passing touchdowns.
In the next game, against SEC West rival Ole Miss, he recorded his first collegiate rushing touchdown in the 66–3 victory. In the annual rivalry game against Tennessee, he finished with 134 passing yards, one passing touchdown, one interception, and one rushing touchdown in the 45–7 victory. On November 18, in a game against Mercer, he threw for three passing touchdowns in the 56–0 victory. On January 8, 2018, he replaced Hurts in the second half of the 2018 College Football Playoff National Championship due to ineffective play by Hurts. He threw the game-winning 41-yard touchdown pass in overtime to wide receiver Devonta Smith to win the game and the National Championship. He finished the 26–23 victory over the Georgia Bulldogs 14-of-24 for 166 passing yards, three passing touchdowns, one interception, and 27 rushing yards. Tagovailoa was named the Offensive MVP of the game. After committing to Alabama and graduating early from Saint Louis School, Tagovailoa along with his family moved to Alabama. Galu Tagovailoa, Tua’s father told AL.com in March 2017, “For us to be around my son Tua … that’s the main reason for the move. We are a family and want to keep it as a family. That’s what the move is about.” Tua is a committed Christian. Tagovailoa has a younger brother, Taulia Tagovailoa, who currently attends and plays quarterback for Thompson High School in Alabaster, Alabama, an hour drive from the University of Alabama campus.
Taulia, according to 247 Sports is currently the 9th ranked dual-threat quarterback in the nation in the Class of 2019 and has offers from nine schools, including Alabama, Florida, Hawaii, Ole Miss, and Oregon. Taulia commited to Alabama on April 21, 2018 during the Alabama Spring game.

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