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Ex-Vandal Iupati Now Super Bowler

Atlanta Falcons' Corey Peters (91) sacks San Francisco 49ers' Colin Kaepernick (7) during the first half of the NFL football NFC Championship game Sunday, Jan. 20, in Atlanta. Trying to hold up Kaepernick is 49ers' Mike Iupati. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

Mike Iupati remembers carefree days playing touch rugby and hide-and-seek with his friends in the village of Vaitogi, American Samoa, only to find himself at age 14 living in the garage of a relative in Garden Grove, Calif. He knew little English and even less about football. Eleven years later, Iupati, called “a gentle giant” by center Jonathan Goodwin, is an All-Pro guard for the 49ers. In contrast to his violent, brute-force style of blocking, Iupati (6-foot-5, 331 pounds) has a cultural predisposition toward kindness and humility. “A lot of people say I have a big heart, but that’s just a part of me,” Iupati said. “I care about others, and I want them to have what I have, experience what I have now. That’s how I see it”/Jerry Mcdonald, Oakland Tribune. More here.

Question: Are you surprised former Vandal Mike Iupati is doing so well in the National Football League?

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D.F. Oliveria
D.F. (Dave) Oliveria joined The Spokesman-Review in 1984. He currently is a columnist and compiles the Huckleberries Online blog and writes about North Idaho in his Huckleberries column.

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