Playing at Kūnuiākea Stadium in Honolulu, Tennessee quarterback Nico Iamaleava took home offensive MVP honors in the Polynesian Bowl. Iamaleava, who arrived in Knoxville back in December, has been taking part in the Polynesian Bowl ahead of classes starting next week. On Friday night, he capped his week with a big performance.
Iamaleava had both his arm and his legs on display, including this 58 yard run. Overall, he handled five carries for 62 yards.
Iamaleava finished the game 13-20 passing, throwing for 186 yards. He tossed a touchdown, as well as an early interception. His team went on to win 22-17.
His best throw of the night went to tight end Duce Robinson, who is another five-star prospect. Nico dropped this one in the bucket, right over the top down the sidelines. He’s going to be asked to make throws like this weekly at Tennessee, so this was good to see.
He also found another five-star receiver on his lone touchdown pass of the day, hitting Zachariah Branch on a slant who did the rest.
5⭐️ QB Nico Iamaleava (Tennessee) finds 5⭐️ WR Zachariah Branch (USC) and the No. 1 WR in the Class of 2023 does the rest ️pic.twitter.com/YS3kBe5Zvo— 247Sports (@247Sports) January 21, 2023
Iamaleava will return to Knoxville this weekend, getting set to start classes on Monday. From there it’ll be about getting acclimated to college life, hitting the weight room and hopping in the nutrition program. Spring football isn’t too far away, with practices likely starting sometime in mid-march.
Needless to say, he will be the main attraction during those handful of weeks, with everything culminating with the Orange and White game in late April.