Uani ‘Unga (Wah-knee Oo-nga) is in his first year with Utah State’s football program as a defensive administrative assistant. In his role, ‘Unga assists the defensive coaches with daily football operations, primarily working with the linebackers and special teams, and working with co-defensive coordinators Frank Maile and Kendrick Shaver, and special teams coordinator Mark Tommerdahl.
‘Unga comes to Utah State after spending the 2016 football season as a volunteer coach at Orem (Utah) High School, working with the linebackers and special teams.
‘Unga began his collegiate career at Oregon State (2009-10) before transferring to BYU, where he redshirted in 2011 and then played in 2012 and 2013. As a senior, he led the nation with 143 tackles (62-solo, 81-assist). During his two-year BYU career, he recorded 171 tackles (78-solo, 93-assist), which included 1.0 sacks and 10.5 tackles for loss, while adding three forced fumbles, one fumble recovery and one interception, to go along with four pass breakups and one quarterback hurry.
Following his collegiate career, ‘Unga signed an NFL free agent contract with the New York Giants and spent three seasons with the franchise. He made his first career start in the NFL against the Dallas Cowboys in 2015 and intercepted a Tony Romo pass during the game.
‘Unga has two older brothers who also played college football as Paul was a defensive end at Arizona State and J.J. was an offensive guard at Midwestern State. He also has a twin brother, Feti, who played linebacker at Oregon State, while his younger brother, Metuisela, plays tight end at Hawaii, and his other younger brother, Chris, plays nose guard for Utah State. He is the cousin of former NFL running backs Harvey ‘Unga, Reno Mahe, and Naufahu Tahi, who is an offensive administrative assistant on the USU football coaching staff.
‘Unga graduated from BYU in 2015 with a degree in American Studies of Humanities. During high school, he spent two years at Etiwanda HS in California and two years at Kahuku HS in Hawaii. Following high school he served a two-year LDS Church Mission in Guatemala from 2007-09.
‘Unga and his wife, Lachelle, have two daughters, Vikatolia and ‘Ofa, and two sons, Kingston and Jon.
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