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Meet USD’s Own Campus Celeb- Johnny Tsunami aka Pono Keni!

Her Campus (HC): What is your full name?

Pono Keni (PK): Sione Loti Ka’imipono Keni IV

HC: What does your name mean?

PK: In literal translation it means: John the prophet and seeker of righteousness and my last name means king. The IV is tricky cause my dad is the junior, so, there really isn’t a third. I might name my kid the third to really screw people up!

HC: So, you’re from Hawaii- what is your favorite part of your hometown? Food, people, beaches, you name it!

PK: I’m from Kailua, Oahu. I love food in general. Put a plate in front of me and I will eat it. But, if I had to name a favorite food, it would be kalua pig (pulled pork in continental US.) I love Sandy’s beach. I go there everyday to surf, drink, bbq- you name it, and we can do it there. 

HC:  Rumor has it you have perfected your cannonball technique so well that you can make a pool overflow, is that true?

PK: Lol yes it is. Back home its called the “coffin” or “bomb” and if you think mine are big, wait till you come home with me, I feel self conscious when I jump off a rock haha.

HC: Do you have any other secret talents we need to know about?

PK: Well, I play volleyball, wrestle, am an avid dancer, can play 9 different instruments, and I can do a 30 second keg stand, on a bad day (:

HC: You are on the football team, what position are you and how long have you been playing for?

PK: I am the left tackle, number 66, or look for the long hair. I am a 3 year starter and have been playing football since freshman year of high school.

HC: You really are a celebrity here on campus. Most people know or have heard of the infamous “Pono”- how have you met and gotten to know so many people?

PK: I wouldn’t say I’m a celebrity, I just like to meet people, and it also helps when you have a 5,000 square foot house that holds roughly 400 people on a good night, so I say I meet a lot of people though those little get togethers.

HC: Word on the street is that people mistake you for real life Johnny Tsunami, how is it knowing your a real life celebrity?

PK: I love the fact that my name is Pono. As for Johnny yes, I’m from Hawaii, I surf, I suck at snowboarding, speak in a way that no one understands, and have long hair. It’s a great conversation starter, and not trying to brag, but, everyone loves Hawaiians (:

HC: In 10 years where do you see yourself?

PK: I would love to be playing football in the NFL, but if that doesn’t happen, maybe I could see myself opening a bar or promoting in vegas (: very ambitious I know…

HC:  Lastly, what is your favorite Hawaiian word and why?

PK: Ohana, super cliché, I know. But without Ohana there is nothing. I’m here because of my them. I make friends who quickly become my family. Without all of you, there is no me. I am who I am because everyone has shaped me this way. Lilo and Stich says it best, “ohana means family, and family means no one gets left behind”

California girl, born and raised in San Diego. Love sushi, Law and Order: SVU, and the beach. Communication major and English minor. Hoping to become a sports broadcaster one day. Love traveling, sports, and spending time with my family and friends. Check out @kellylinne on Instagram for more.
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