Otuafi, Andrews ink letters to play football at Feather River
A pair of state champions penned their letter of intent to continue playing football at the collegiate level.
Fallon grads Sione Otuafi and Ethan Andrews will play football at Feather River College, a two-year school in Quincy, Calif.
Otuafi, a 6-foot-3 inch, 290-pound senior offensive lineman, was named the first team for both the all-league and all-state teams after leading Fallon to a runner-up finish in the state title game. The Fallon line produced the best offense in the league as it opened the holes for 2,501 rushing yards and 2,368 passing yards.
“This is a good fit for him to give him a chance to develop a little bit more,” Fallon coach Brooke Hill said. “With junior college football, you have a chance to work on weaknesses and improve. I think it was important for him to be near home. I think it was a good fit for him and he has a good chance to play right away.”
Andrews was a first-team all-league and all-state cornerback after totaling 34 tackles, two interceptions and two fumble recoveries, including one that resulted in a 39-yard run. As a junior, Andrews’ interception in the final series at Truckee sealed Fallon’s road win on its way to winning the state championship against the Wolverines in 2018.
Andrews, whose step-father is Hill, credits his family for pushing him during his high school chapter and is excited to be playing close to home.
“My family always wants to see the best out of me and I have always love the game of football,” he said. “I knew I wanted to keep playing the game at the next level.”
Hill said Feather River noticed Andrews’ athleticism and his knowledge on defense.
“They love his athleticism because he’s a great athlete,” Hill said about Andrews’ impression on Feather River. “He understands coverage and playing that position. He’s got instincts for the game. He’s got to put weight on. If he puts the weight on and takes care of things in the classroom, he’s going to have opportunities to play.”
Hill said the staff at Feather River is new and pushed to recruit Northern Nevada players during the offseason. He believes both Andrews and Otuafi will have opportunities to land at a solid four-year school.
“That’s why JUCO’s good for them because they’re going to develop. You’ve got an opportunity to play right away and start to develop your game,” Hill said. “I think it’s a good opportunity for both of them. The ultimate goal is getting the four-year degree. That’s what we want to see.”
Andrews and Otuafi join Brock Richardson and Tommy McCormick in inking their letters to play football. Richardson will join his brother at College of Idaho while McCormick will also meet up with his older brother at Idaho.
Hill said the continuation of Fallon student-athletes moving to the next level of football is a testament to the players buying into his program.
“Because of the success we had the last 10 years, kids have seen it,” said Hill, who was named the Coach of the Year last year. “You could have an opportunity. A lot of it is because of the culture we’ve built to win some football games and be successful. But it’s also about their hard work.
“We believe in what we do. I don’t believe we’re the same football team we were 10 years ago. We’re always wanting to get better ourselves, too.”