A 2017 class recruit, Mountain Crest (UT) linebacker prospect Levani Damuni has been a defensive force on the Mustangs’ football team. Coming in at around 6-2, 225-pounds, Damuni had committed early to Utah State, where his father, Waqa Damuni, is the Assistant Athletic Director for Football Operations.
“I just re-opened up my recruiting,” said Levani. “I’ve decided to do that. I’m being looked at by other schools and just feel I need to go to school outside this valley that I live in right now.
“I want to go to a school that has [fulfills] my academic needs as well as can fulfill my spiritual needs. I want to go to a school that plays big games. BYU is recruiting me pretty hard.”
With offers from BYU and Utah, in addition to Vanderbilt and Colorado, Damuni is taking a closer look at his options. As far as BYU goes, Damuni receives letters every week from the coaches recruiting him. He also hears from his uncle, Jack Damuni, who is the Director of Player Personnel at BYU.
“BYU has been really showing interest in me and I get those letters every week from the coaches,” said Damuni. “BYU is still an option for me. My uncle Jack [Damuni] was hired over there. I have family over there. It makes my interest go up in BYU just because my family is there.
In addition to his offers, Damuni has also recently been hearing from Virginia now that the old BYU coaching staff is there.
“I’m still getting interest from other schools,” Damuni said. “I liked Utah a lot too, and Washington has been talking to me a lot but they haven’t offered me yet. Virginia has been talking me a lot too and showing interest.”
Now that Uncle Jack Damuni is a part of the BYU staff, one would think the Cougars of BYU would be a major player for Levani. There is no question that Uncle Jack Damuni’s influence will play a big role.
“I think that will play a role in where I go because he affects that decision,” said Damuni. “He’ll play a big role for sure. It’s a good thing to have family there.”
Not only is Levani Damuni close to his uncle Jack, but he’s also very close with BYU Director of Recruiting Operations Tevita Ofahengaue. Ofahengaue grew up with Levani’s uncle, Jack, and father, Waqa, on the North Shore in Hawaii. These LDS families have a long history together and are very close.
“I was talking to Uncle Tevita and he was telling me that if I come down to BYU I could find a good wife like my dad did with my mom,” said Damuni. “He just always talks about coming down there because they’re all good friends with my dad.”
Aside from hearing from his uncles on why he should attend BYU, Damuni is also hearing from surprisingly enough from BYU offensive coordinator Ty Detmer. It appears Damuni has caught Detmer’s eye as a possible offensive addition to BYU's offense.
“Ty Detmer sent me a letter and said he wants me to come down there and play for him on the offensive side of the ball,” said Damuni. “He said he wants me to play running back. The defensive coaches want me down there to play defense.”
Which side of the ball would Damuni want to play if he were to chooses to attend BYU?
“Probably on the defensive side of the ball,” said Damuni. “I want to play defense at the next level.”
Levani make his final decision on where to play college football sometime during next football season.
“Probably sometime next year during my senior year,” said Damuni. “I’m not sure during the season or after, but I know I’ll probably be during my senior year.”
However, before Levani Damuni ever makes a single tackle in college, he will serve an LDS mission.
“Yeah, I plan on serving my mission once I finish up with high school,” said Damuni. “That’s something that I want to do before I go to college.”