Fast forward 20 years and the Damuni name again has a chance to be associated with the BYU football program. Mountain Crest High School athlete Levani Damuni has received a BYU scholarship offer from Bronco Mendenhall.
“I’m 6-1 and weigh around 195-200 pounds right now,” Damuni said. “This past year I played a lot of running back, receiver, outside linebacker, and defensive end,” Damuni said. “BYU said they’re not sure what they’re going to recruit me as. They don’t know if they want to use me on offense or defense.
“BYU has been talking to me for a while now. I [was] invited to go down there when all the other recruits where there for a basketball game. I kind of knew then that I was going to get offered.”
Present for Levani Damuni’s BYU scholarship offer were fellow Laie natives Robert Anae and Mark Atuaia. When Coach Mendenhall extended Damuni the offer many were excited including Uncle Jack Damuni, who received word of the offer later.
“Bronco, uncle Marky, and Robert Anae were there when I got the offer,” said Damuni. “It just felt great to get that offer from BYU, and I was really excited about it. Yeah, it felt great. I’ve had some family play there and my mom went there. My uncle Jack was really happy about it. Uncle Marky and Robert where also really excited for me.”
And, of course, Levani Damuni was excited to learn he had finally received a scholarship offer from BYU.
“Yeah, it’s way exciting to me and I’ve been looking forward to it for a while now,” said Damuni. “I just really like BYU a lot. It’s every LDS kid’s dream to go there.”
Levani’s father Waqa Damuni was a three-year letter winner as a tight end for Utah State in the late 1990’s. He returned to Utah State as the Assistant Athletics Director for Football Operations after Aggies head coach Matt Wells brought him back into the Aggie fold from Arkansas State. Upon realizing his son had received a BYU scholarship offer, even Waqa Damuni was happy for his son.
“He was really happy for me and pulled me over and said, ‘Whatever you decide and whatever you want to do I’ll support you,’” Damuni said. “Yeah, he was pretty happy about it.”
Levani Damuni had verbally committed to Utah State following a scholarship offer last summer, but now with the offer in hand from BYU he’ll be opening up his options.
“I verbally committed to Utah State but now I’m still open to my options,” Damuni said. “Utah State offered me last summer, but I’m going to open up my recruiting now and wait to see what my options are. Hopefully I’ll have my final decision by my senior year.”
Damuni will serve a two-year LDS mission following his prep career. Then the Mountain Crest star will enroll in school and play out his collegiate eligibility.