Hoomanawanui Picked by Rams on Final Day of NFL Draft

Michael Hoomanawanui is headed to the St. Louis Rams.
Michael Hoomanawanui is headed to the St. Louis Rams.

April 24, 2010

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Benn, Asamoah Drafted

Former University of Illinois football player Michael Hoomanawanui had his name called on Saturday morning during the third and final day of the 2010 National Football League Draft. Hoomanawanui was selected with the first pick of the fifth round (132nd overall) by the St. Louis Rams. He is the first Illini tight end draft since Ken Dilger was taken in the second round of the 1995 draft.

"It's a great feeling to be picked," Hoomanawanui said. "I talked with Coach Leonard down there, the tight ends coach, and I think I have a great opportunity to go in and showcase my skills and talents. I had a great workout with them and they told me they like my size and athleticism at the position. I'm excited to get down to St. Louis and get into the playbook."

Hoomanawanui played in 41 games in his four years as Illinois' starting tight end. The Bloomington, Ill., native totaled 40 career receptions, averaging 12.3 yards per catch and scoring four touchdowns. He earned honorable mention All-Big Ten honors in 2008, but was plagued by an ankle injury, which kept him out of four games during his senior season.

Hoomanawanui was the third Illini player taken in the 2010 NFL Draft. On Friday, wide receiver Arrelious Benn was selected by Tampa Bay in the second round and offensive guard Jon Asamoah was picked by Kansas City in the third. For a full list of 2010 NFL Draft picks, visit

After the drafts' completion, three additional Illini signed free agent contracts -- receiver Jeff Cumberland signed on with the NY Jets, receiver Chris Duvalt was picked up by the Seattle Seahawks and running back Daniel Dufrene was signed by the Giants.

Fighting Illini Taken in the 2010 NFL Draft

Player			Pos.	Round	Pick	Team	
Arrelious Benn		WR	2	39	Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Jon Asamoah		OG	3	68	Kansas City Chiefs
Michael Hoomanawanui	TE	5	132	St. Louis Rams