Honolulu Star-Advertiser/Hawaii Prep World All-Decade Football Team: DEFENSE

Today, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser released its All-Decade football team on defense and special teams. The offensive team will be released Wednesday.

To read capsules on the players selected and players who just barely missed the cut, click here.

Below we present the All-Decade prep football team from the Honolulu Star-Advertiser and Hawaii Prep World for 2010-19.

Defensive Player of the Decade

Faatui Tuitele, DT, Saint Louis, 2016-18
>> 2018 Defensive Player of the Year
>> Two-time All-State first team
>> All-State second team

Saint Louis’ Faatui Tuitele won three state championships and one player of the year award before heading off to Washington. Photo by Bruce Asato/Star-Advertiser.


Kennedy Tulimasealii, Waianae, 2012-12
>> Three-time All-State first team

Waianae defensive tackle Kennedy Tulimasealii hounded opposing quarterbacks for three years to start the decade. Photo by Bruce Asato/Star-Advertiser.


Christian Mejia, Kailua, 2014-16
>> Two-time All-State first team

Kailua’s Christian Mejia, who played both ways, is the only player to be named to the Star-Advertiser All-State first team at defensive end twice this decade. Photo by Bruce Asato/Star-Advertiser.


DeForest Buckner, Punahou, 2010-12
>> All-State first team
>> All-State second team

Punahou’s DeForest Buckner was unstoppable for three years for the Buffanblu. Photo by Jamm Aquino/Star-Advertiser.


Nick Herbig, Saint Louis, 2017-19
>> 2019 Defensive Player of the Year
>> Two-time All-State first team

Saint Louis linebacker Nick Herbig ended every year on varsity with a state championship and closed his career as the defensive player of the year in 2019. Photo by Jamm Aquino/Star-Advertiser.


Miki Ah You, Kahuku, 2016-18
>> Two-time All-State first team

Only injury kept Kahuku’s Miki Ah You from earning All-State first-team honors for a third time in his senior season. Photo by Bruce Asato/Star-Advertiser.


Jordan Botelho, Saint Louis, 2017-19
>> Two-time All-State first team

St. Louis linebacker Jordan Botelho (12) was the most physically imposing player on the Crusaders defense in 2019. Photo by Steven Erler/Special to the Star-Advertiser.


Kekaula Kaniho, Kahuku, 2014-16
>> 2016 Defensive Player of the Year
>> Two-time All-State first team

Kahuku defensive back Kekaula Kaniho had six interceptions in his senior season and returned five of them for touchdowns. Photo by Jamm Aquino/Star-Advertiser.


Stokes Nihipali-Botelho, Kahuku, 2014-16
>> Two-time All-State first team

Kahuku’s Stokes Nihipali-Botelho scored eight touchdowns in his senior season on defense and special teams. Photo by Bruce Asato/Star-Advertiser.


Kawehena Johnson, Kahuku, 2010-12
>> 2012 Defensive Player of the Year
>> Two-time All-State first team
>> All-State second team

Kahuku’s Kawehena Johnson capped off his high school career by winning defensive player of the year honors in 2012. Star-Advertiser file photo.


Keala Santiago, Kahuku, 2013-15
>> 2015 Defensive Player of the Year
>> Two-time All-State first team

Kahuku’s Keala Santiago won the defensive player of the year award in 2015. Star-Advertiser file photo.


Jet Toner, Punahou, 2013-15
>> Two-time All-State first team
>> All-State second team

Punahou’s Jet Toner was the only kicker to make three different All-State teams during the decade. Photo by Bruce Asato/Star-Advertiser.


Adam Stack, Kamehameha, 2014-16
>> All-State first team
>> All-State third team

Kamehameha’s Adam Stack handled all kicking duties for the Warriors. Photo by Jamm Aquino/Star-Advertiser.


Shepherd Kekahuna, St. Francis/Roosevelt, 2016-19
>> All-State first team

Roosevelt senior Shepherd Kekahuna made the All-State first team in his only year with the Rough Riders. Photo by Parish Kaleiwahea/Special to the Star-Advertiser.



  1. ??? December 31, 2019 7:21 am

    Amazing: In the last Decade KAHUKU has a Lock on Every Defensive Back position.

  2. Billy Bob December 31, 2019 8:25 am

    Too bad they couldn’t Stop Mililani or St Louis passing attacks !!!

  3. Observation December 31, 2019 8:27 am

    If at midnight tonight I thought it was the end of a decade, this list sounds good. But, let’s be clear, the end of the second decade of this century comes December 31st, 2020 and not 2019. The start of this century (21st Century) began on January 1st, 2001 and ends December 31st, 2100. Please count each of the 10 years (decades) through the century and tell me that this is the end of the second decade of this century.

  4. Nomakesense December 31, 2019 9:56 am

    Is that why there are no representatives from the classes of 2010 or 2011? Juda Parker 2010 and Benny Fonua 2011 both defensive players of their respective classes were certainly worthy in the eyes of these same geniuses a decade ago. Huh.

  5. Falcon Future December 31, 2019 10:03 am

    Funny observation @Observation, but it’s a matter of interpretation. There is no formal rule or law for this. Some will say this decade started on January 1, 2000. Others will say it started on January 1, 2001.

    Either way … who cares?

    Same with this article. What a waste of time.

  6. ILoveHawaii December 31, 2019 10:55 am

    I guess returning kicks against OPEN division teams are a cakewalk.

  7. Braddah Bu December 31, 2019 11:06 am

    Interesting list: Returner should’ve been Vincent Terrell in my opinion. Shepherd is a great player but 5 Returns against Waialua, Pearl City, Kalani, Kaiser, and Kaimuki outweight 4 Returns against Kailua, Long Beach Poly, Kamehameha and Saint Louis??

  8. ILoveHawaii December 31, 2019 11:26 am

    Terrell would have had at least 2 against each of those teams.

    The same mistake was made on the All-state team selection too.

  9. ??? December 31, 2019 1:49 pm

    @ Billy Bob
    You bettah do your research cause Kahuku has more STATE titles than any other school in Hawaii history.
    So obviously they been able to stop other teams passing?

  10. ILoveHawaii December 31, 2019 2:12 pm

    Boom. There it is.

    Not the capitalize the STATE in state title, huh?? lol.

  11. RRFL December 31, 2019 3:08 pm


    The stat about Kahuku has more state titles is not a real stat. We not gonna include all the Prep Bowls that STL won in the 90s and 80s? Mind you Kahuku competed in those times too, so STL has been better for longer.

  12. afan December 31, 2019 3:52 pm

    Kahuku’s DBs were crazy good in the decade! Athletic, smart, and solid technique wise!

  13. Tupid-phone December 31, 2019 5:57 pm

    Care about it. These boys represent and they represent the state. Keep hungry and forget what everyone on here is talking about even myself. Lol… 808 standing out to the rest of the world in sports is what matters. Se, eye guy.

  14. ??? December 31, 2019 10:02 pm

    @ RRFL
    You answered your own question!
    We talking STATE titles “State Tournament” NOT prep bowls! Everyone knows STL has more prep bowls and will pass Kahuku soon in State Tournament titles also.
    Everyone except YOU; also knows if you can recruit the WHOLE state, you should have the most titles!!!! SMH

  15. RR4L January 1, 2020 8:11 am


    Prep Bowl, State Championship, let’s be honest it’s the same thing. How many State championships have outer islands won? There’s not even an outer island team, in the Open Division. Different name, same thing.

    And stop it with the whole recruiting thing already. Cause STL is the ONLY school that can recruit from the whole state? If recruiting is the only thing that makes STL state champions, why can’t the other private schools duplicate their success.

  16. HischFB January 1, 2020 11:25 am

    Kennedy was head & shoulders better than Tuitele, Kennedy was on a whole different LEVEL!

  17. Coach Lou January 1, 2020 11:40 am

    Wow, Defense of the Decade dominated by Kahuku, a small populated public school in the countryside. I counted 5 players. Awesome.

  18. Real Talk on HawaiiPrepWorld January 1, 2020 11:57 am

    Kekaula Kaniho probably goes down as the GOAT in Hawaii football when it comes to the corner position. Kid had a pick-six dang near every game his senior year against the best teams in the state. He had a sensational game against (then #1 ranked) Bishop Gorman as well.

    Another name i’d like to throw out there is Tigi Hill. Size of a linebacker and the speed of a DB. He only played one year in this decade, but he’s someone that should be on an NFL roster right now.

  19. ??? January 1, 2020 12:41 pm

    @ RR4L
    The Story says Decade so there was NO prep bowl in the last decade only state tournament championships.
    Why can’t other schools beat STL when they recruit too? The same reason No one can beat Punahou in boys volleyball? Punahou will always dominate boys volleyball while STL is the IMG of Hawaii for football & there is nothing wrong with that.

  20. Braddah Bu January 1, 2020 3:58 pm

    I think I would pick Rex Manu over Tuitele at the Tackle Position

  21. Football boy January 1, 2020 8:05 pm

    Kanai Mauga over Bothelo, in my option I just don’t see it with Bothelo.

  22. Sea breeze January 1, 2020 8:09 pm

    I’ve benn watching Hawaii football for ages. If there ever was one Dominant defensive player it was KENNEDY TULIMASEALII.

  23. ??? January 2, 2020 4:39 pm

    Most Dominant: Kennedy Hands Down!!

  24. seniorcitizen2020 January 2, 2020 8:10 pm

    Kennedy was a bit undersized but the most dominant dline of the decade.

  25. Nick Abramo January 3, 2020 12:40 pm

    Answer to “Observation”:

    I understand your argument about when decades start and begin.

    There are two ways to look at it, though.

    Technically, the decade (for example) started Jan. 1., 2011 and will end on Dec. 31, 2020. Ten full years. I get it.

    But the other way to look at it is when you start talking about the ’70s, ’80s, ’90s, ’00s, ’10s, ’20s, ’30s, etc.

    Looking at it that way — and it will take some getting used to on your part — the 1970s, for instance, started on Jan. 1, 1970 and ended on Dec. 31, 1979.

    Once Jan. 1, 1980, hit, the ’70s were history, even though technically the end of the decade is Dec. 31, 1980.

    So, in a nutshell, what I’m saying is:

    >> This All-Decade team is the team of the Teens (or ’10s) — from 2010 to 2019 and does not include any years from the ’20s.

  26. NDSA January 11, 2020 6:23 am

    Solomon Mautautia (Campbell) if not at safety then he should have been the returner for sure!!!

  27. 808rydah July 3, 2020 8:04 pm

    Brennan fehoko was more dominant then tuitele

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