Naeole in 2014
|Born:||December 25, 1974|
|Height:||6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)|
|Weight:||328 lb (149 kg)|
|High school:||Kahuku (Kahuku, Hawaii)|
|NFL Draft:||1997 / Round: 1 / Pick: 10|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NFL statistics|
|Player stats at PFR|
Christopher Kealoha Naeole ([nəeˈolɛ]; born December 25, 1974) is an American football coach. He served as the interim head coach and offensive line coach for the University of Hawaii Rainbow Warriors football team. During his playing career, Naeole was a guard in the National Football League (NFL) for eleven seasons. He played college football for the University of Colorado, and was recognized as an All-American. A first-round pick of the New Orleans Saints in the 1997 NFL Draft, Naeole played professionally for the Saints and Jacksonville Jaguars of the NFL.
Naeole was born in Kailua, Hawaii. He attended Kahuku High School in Kahuku, Hawaii, and earned two letters in football and one in wrestling. In football, he was a high school All-America first-team selection by Prep Football Report, and received second-team accolades from Blue Chip Report and an honorable mention from USA Today as a senior. As a two-way tackle, he made 56 tackles, five sacks, eight passes deflected, four forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries as a senior.
Naeole attended the University of Colorado-Boulder, where he was a three-year starter for the Colorado Buffaloes football team at right guard. In three seasons, he allowed only one sack. As a senior in 1996, he was recognized as a consensus first-team All-American and was an All-Big 12 Conference first-team selection. Naeole was the recipient of the John Mack Award, given to team's Most Outstanding Offensive Player. He graduated from the university with a degree in sociology and a 3.0 grade point average.
1997 NFL Draft
Naeole was drafted tenth overall in the 1997 NFL Draft by the New Orleans Saints. He was highest selected guard since Eric Moore in 1988, and the first Colorado offensive lineman selected in the first round since Stan Brock was drafted by the Saints in 1980.
New Orleans Saints
On July 17, 1997, Naeole signed a five-year, $8 million deal with the New Orleans Saints, and soon afterwards bought a 4,000-square-foot house in Metairie, Louisiana. He played for the team through 2001, and was a starter throughout his time with the Saints.
Naeole was signed by the Jacksonville Jaguars as an unrestricted free agent in 2002. In Week 8 of the 2007 season he suffered a torn quadriceps tendon and was placed on injured reserve. Until this injury, Naeole had missed only one game in his 11 years as a pro, and had started 150 of 154 games in his pro career.
On March 3, 2008, Naeole was released by the Jaguars. He was re-signed on September 17 but did not play again. Naeole later indicated in 2010 that he had retired from professional football.
Naeole was hired as an assistant football coach for ʻIolani School in Honolulu. He began his duties in the 2010 season. After three years with 'Iolani, Naeole was named the offensive line coach for the Hawaii Warriors. On November 1, 2015, Naeole was named Hawaii's interim head coach following the firing of Norm Chow and finished the season with a 1–3 record.
Naeole was retained as offensive line coach by new Hawaii head coach Nick Rolovich. On October 6, 2017, Naeole resigned, due to what he called "philosophical differences with the handling of disciplinary matters in the program."
- Pro Football Hall of Fame, Draft History, 1997 National Football League Draft. Retrieved February 2, 2012.
- "Kahuku's Naeole signs for $8 million". Honolulu Star-Bulletin. July 17, 1997.
- Chris Naeole Archived June 25, 2009, at the Wayback Machine Jacksonville Jaguars bio
- Tsai, Stephen (June 18, 2010). "Naeole returns home, retired, set for new role". Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Archived from the original on 2010-06-22. Retrieved June 18, 2010.
- Tsai, Stephen (2013-02-13). "Naeole joins UH staff". Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Retrieved 2013-02-13.
- "Chow let go by University of Hawaii". Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Retrieved 1 November 2015.
- Tsai, Stephen (October 6, 2017). "Naeole resigns as UH offensive line coach". Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Retrieved September 25, 2018.