Pauu hoping for BYU scholarship offer

Ranked seventh in the nation by MaxPreps, Servite High School features a defense that is manned in the middle by a tough LDS middle linebacker by the name of Butch Pauu. Although a junior, Pauu has yet to receive a scholarship offer. However, he is working hard and hopes some university – particularly BYU – will pull the trigger soon.

Servite High School defeated rival Mater Dei for the second straight year, but fell 48-8 in California's CIF State Open Division championship bowl game to top-ranked De La Salle. It was Servite's first loss of the season. Despite the loss, 6-foot-1-inch, 220-pound Butch Pauu has had a successful season.

"I have around 10-11 tackles per game," said Pauu. "From the middle linebacker position, I have around three or four interceptions. I also have around three caused fumbles. We don't really keep stats at our school so I don't know how many total tackles I have on the season."

Pauu is an aggressive and powerful middle backer that also received spot offensive duties rushing and catching the ball. He's even scored touchdowns from the wildcat and tight end positions this season.

"I have a lot of schools sending me letters of interest," Pauu said. "I mean, I have LSU sending me letters every week, and so is BYU. A lot of … schools like Oregon, UCLA, USC, Stanford and Missouri and Colorado have started sending me letters. Nebraska has been sending me letters too. One of the coaches from Notre Dame came by and talked to me the other day and said he's going to be picking up some film."

BYU is one of the colleges currently recruiting Pauu the hardest.

"The schools that are recruiting me the hardest are Oregon, BYU, USC, UCLA and LSU," Pauu said. "I'm also getting recruited a lot by Nebraska now."

Pauu has been out to BYU, but it's been a long time since his last visit. He hopes to get out to Provo this summer to put his skills on display for the Cougar coaches, assuming the staff has yet to offer him by that time.

"BYU is a great school and I was able to go to one of their high school camps during my freshman year," said Pauu. "It was a great experience over there, but I haven't been over there since then. Maybe this summer I'll try and get over there for the camp."

Pauu has a couple family connections to BYU.

"My mom is an alumni of BYU and she loves it," said Pauu. "She said everyone is really nice over there. I also have a family member playing over there at BYU as a linebacker. His name is Uona [Kaveinga], and he's always telling me how much fun he's having being over there. He played at USC but transferred to BYU and said he really likes it over there."

Pauu's Cougar linebacker cousin gave him some personal insight into what it's like being LDS and playing football at the college level.

"[Kaveinga] said that by going to BYU, it was a great opportunity for him to get back to his faith and serve a mission if he wanted to," Pauu said. "He said at USC he thought he was going to be able to serve his mission but that whole thing didn't work out. He said that by going to BYU, it's really gotten him back to his roots. He said it's been a really good thing for him."

Serving a mission is a top priority for Pauu. It's a goal he's had for a long time and will be something college recruiters will have to understand if they want to secure his services.

"I want to serve a mission when I go to college and I would like to have the opportunity to serve first. My parents have raised me up with the understanding that serving a mission is the number one thing you do. I would want to make sure that if I go to a college that I will be able to do that first."

Despite his aggressive and hard-hitting exploits on the football field, Pauu's polite and humble nature has endeared many to him off the field of play.

"Servite is a Catholic school and a lot of kids are worried about me serving a mission, thinking it will hurt my football career," Pauu said. "I'm going to serve the Lord first and whatever he has for me after that will be."

The Cougar coach that has been recruiting Pauu is BYU defensive line coach Steve Kaufusi.

"I've been talking to Coach Steve Kaufusi and he's been down to Servite a few times," said Pauu. "I'm hoping they offer me. I mean, that's my church college. It's a great environment, great school, facilities, and I could stay focused and grounded to my roots of being a Mormon. It would be a great opportunity for me to play over there. Hopefully they'll offer me soon."

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