Masina to visit BYU

Brighton High School linebacker Uaea Masina has two scholarship offers on the table. On June 13 he'll attend BYU's Junior Day and compete in the hopes of receiving his third offer.

Things are going good for Uaea Masina. Right now he's just focusing on making sure his grades are in order and that he's in a good position to broaden his college choices.


"The two schools that have offered me are Utah and Colorado right now," Masina said. "I'm just kind of keeping in touch with Colorado and maybe planning a date to go out there, but I'm not sure when. Other schools that I'm talking to are Oregon State, Boise State and a little bit with San Diego State."

The Brighton High School linebacker will also be heading to California this month.

"I'm going to the Stanford camp too," Masina said. "I'll be heading there around the 25th for the Thursday, Friday and Saturday."

In addition to all the schools listed above, Masina has also been speaking with BYU

"I still keep in constant contact with BYU all the time," said Masina. "I'm going up to their camp on June 13th. It's an invite-only camp and they were telling me that only certain kids were invited, so that was cool.

"Coach DuPaix and Coach Poppinga are really excited to see me out there. I'm looking forward to it and I'm excited to compete against some of the best kids around and see what I've got. I'm way excited."

For Masina, the type of men coaching at each school is something that's very important.

"The first thing I look at is how I like them as people, and then I see if I like them as coaches," Masina said. "From there it just keeps growing to how I like the program and on and on. It has to start somewhere, so it usually starts with what I think of the coaches as people and then it moves on from there to the program and school."

So how does Coach Poppinga stack up against the coaching competition?

"He's a good man," Masina said with a slight laugh in his voice. "Coach Poppinga is a great guy. I mean, he's always excited and always upbeat and everything. I mean, I just think he's a pretty cool guy and I really like him a lot.

"When he heard that Coach K [Kotulski] from Stanford came down and I was talking to him, he just had flashbacks and was talking about him. It was funny."

Stanford linebacker coach David Kotulski was Utah State's defensive coordinator in 2003 to 2004. This was a time when a young linebacker by the name of Kelly Poppinga was suited up as an Aggie prior to transferring to BYU.

"He just started laughing," Masina said. "Coach Poppinga was talking about how Coach K taught him and stuff like that back in the days. He talked about all the memories that came back and just how crazy he was and stuff like that. It was pretty funny."

Masina is aiming to perform well enough at BYU's Junior Day to earn an offer.

"Yeah, I hope so and that's what I'm going to try to do," he said. "I just want to do my best and have fun. Hopefully I do well enough against the competition to get a scholarship from there."

Masina has visited BYU about three times, and although he doesn't have an offer yet, the vibes he receives are always positive.

"Yeah, I mean, the coaching staff out there at BYU are great guys and I like them a lot," he said. "Poppinga seems like a great coach and I really like him a lot. I sat in on one of his meetings and thought it was way cool how he coaches. I've met Coach DuPaix and shook the hands of some of the other coaches down there. I definitely have good vibes about BYU and there are no negative vibes there at all. I like it a lot."

BYU is holding on to a few scholarships later in the recruiting process in order to have available offers for any late discoveries. Junior Day will feature prospects such as Evan Colorito, Jeff Williams, Sam Baldwin and Johnny Ragin, to name a few.

"They just tell me to make sure that I'm ready for it," Masina said, "that I need to come down there and show what I've got, and are letting me just get prepared on my own. I'm excited to head down there and compete."

BYU is recruiting Masina as an outside linebacker, although he's played multiple positions for Brighton High School.

"I play a little bit of d-end, safety and outside linebacker at my school," Masina said. "The coaches at BYU told me that if I go there, they're looking at me as a Sam or a Will linebacker. They said I would probably be like a Sam linebacker, and that would be pretty cool."

Although he's been down to BYU a few times before and knows quite a bit about what the university has to offer on and off the field, Masina will take a different approach to his next visit.

"What I'm going to look for is just how all the coaches work together and stuff like that," he said. "I want to see how they all are together and how well they work together. I also hope to meet some of the players to ask how they like BYU and stuff like that. Maybe tour the facilities more and check out some practices and stuff like that. I think most of it comes down to how you feel more than anything else."


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