LA GRANDE, Ore. – The Eastern Oregon University football team has announced the promotion of Levi Suiaunoa as the Defensive Coordinator.
Suiaunoa has been the Defensive Line coach for the Mountaineers since the 2009 season. The native of American Samoa joined Tim Camp's Eastern Oregon staff after coaching at Procter Hug High School in Reno, Nev. during the 2008 season.
“It’s going to be fun,” Camp said of the promotion. “His personality is going to be reflected in the way we play defense, and he will help take us to places that we haven’t been yet. I’m so excited about this.
“I am really excited for Levi and for our defense. I know he is a great fit for us. He has been around, he knows our players, and he understands the defense well. He will set players up to succeed and let us go out and play hard and fast. I think continuity is critical. I think when you can promote from within; so to speak, you give qualified guys an opportunity right here on our campus.”
Suiaunoa replaces Solomona Tapasa on the Mountaineer staff. Eastern Oregon excelled in its rush defense last season. EOU was 14th in the NAIA in total sacks.
“I like the fact that I have been here and have watched these men go through our system,” Suiaunoa said. “I have seen them make their first start, tackles, and sack. I am honored to be the Defensive Coordinator here at Eastern. I am looking forward to working with this group of student-athletes and defending every blade of grass on the field.
“Every time the defense is on the field is an opportunity to make great things happen for this Mountie football program.”
Suiaunoa previously coached at his alma mater, Leone High School as well as Nu'uuli Polytechnical High School in American Samoa. While at Leone High School the team went to two consecutive Island Championship games, winning the title in 2006.
Eastern Oregon will open its 2011 season at Montana Tech on Sept. 3. The Mountaineers begin their Spring practice in April.