Walk-on traveling 3,000 miles to play at SMU

EKolu Soon

Have talent will travel to play for admired coach. Ekolu Soon has spent the last four years attending a lot of the University of Hawaii football games where he became very impressed with the Warrior's offense under the direction of June Jones.

Have talent will travel to play for admired coach.

Ekolu Soon has spent the last four years attending a lot of the University of Hawaii football games where he became very impressed with the Warrior's offense under the direction of June Jones.

Soon had planned to play for Jones and the Warriors this fall, only one problem, Jones took the job at Southern Methodist over 3,000 miles away.

Soon, a Honolulu native, made his decision last week to follow Jones and his coaching staff to Dallas instead.

"We made the trip to Dallas over spring break," Soon told PonyStampede.com Friday evening. "I loved the line of trees when you enter the campus, it was so beautiful. I loved the campus, this is paradise to me."

Soon had developed a great relationship with Mustang wide receiver coach Jeff Reinebold and Coach Jones while they were on the Island, those relationships played a major role in Soon's decision.

"I have been visiting those coaches for a long time," Soon said. "Hawaii offered me a preferred walk-on spot also, but I love the SMU coaches."

Soon realizes that he may be far from home but was intrigued about the quality education he could receive on the Hilltop.

"SMU has a strong academic reputation," Soon said. "You can always go home; it's good to experience life in other places to help mold me into a better person. I'm excited about attending school and playing football at SMU."

Soon had committed to Army at West Point, but decided that SMU's offense was a better fit for his talents. The 5-foot-10 wide out that runs a 4.5 forty, is excited about the Mustangs high power offense.

"They are changing to the wishbone at Army," Soon said. "I will play slot receiver at SMU. We sign a certificate there, not a letter of intent and they aren't binding until you enroll and you begin your first day of training. My parents and I made the decision last week that Dallas was a better location for me."

Soon will be a preferred walk-on at SMU and will attempt to earn an athletic scholarship down the road.

"The SMU coaches are telling me that they will probably red shirt me my first year," Soon said. "SMU has been great about coming up with a lot of academic money, so it's not as bad as we first thought."

Soon made a 1900 on the SAT and carries a 3.5 G.P.A. helping his cause for academic scholarships.

"My studies have always been very important to me," Soon said. "Whether or not things work out on the football field I will still get a great education. I'm very confident I will end up seeing the playing field during my career there."

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