Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa’s sudden rise to prominence was stunning – when the Samoan born – Hawaiian raised freshman back-up, stepped-up with a 2018 overtime, game-winning championship throw – that threw him to the forefront of college football!
“My life has accelerated in many ways. Especially after you come off the bench, you know, no one really knows who you are! How people treat you is totally different. How people view you is totally different. Now you’re at a pedestal where every little thing you do now is under a microscope, you know! It’s not the same anymore. Something I’ve always dreamed – you know, when I was a kid, winning a national championship. Never thought I’d get the opportunity to be on Sports Illustrated!”
Question: “How are you different do you think? How have you grown from that freshman season?”
Tua: “A lot more maturity takes place. A lot more ownership for the quarterback room! A lot more ownership for the team! So, a bigger leadership role! Our family it’s basically faith, family and football! You know, so everything is based on our faith – grounded and rooted in that.”
Question: “Vision to see, core to throw from – does that transfer over into life – having vision and having the footing to handle?
Tua: “Oh yeah it definitely does! Football when you’re a quarterback your base is the biggest thing — being able to throw and follow through, having your ground really centered, where the ball’s going to go and how hard its going to travel. Your foundation is what you’re always going to revert back to. For me, my foundation is my faith and my family. You know my faith is what keeps me motivated when I can’t even stay motivated myself. I’m just trying to play football, just trying to be able to take care of my family and be able to use my platform for the right reasons.”
Question: “What do you admire most about Jesus Christ?”
Tua: “The greatest gift that God could’ve ever given us was his son! It’s not just a matter of hearing what Jesus Christ is. It’s a matter of getting to know who Jesus Christ is! To really understand and really feel the identity of who you are because of things that He’s done. And I’d say you can only find your identity through Him, if you know Him.”
Question: “The story with your grandfather goes that he once proclaimed, when you were an infant – that your name would become great, world renowned, giving recognition to God’s honor. When you look back on that 20 some years later, where you’re sitting today – how does that resonate with you?”
Tua: “That’s only something that God could have done. My grandfather was someone who we really go to before games for prep talks and soft words – you know, just go out there with the heart of David or things like that. And when our grandfather would tell us this, you know, we really wouldn’t know what it meant. But, you know, as you grow older you start to understand the revelation of what he’s been saying and they all fall into one thing – knowing that what we believe in – is something much bigger than us!”