Hunter High School (UT) athlete Lorenzo Fauatea has been offered by Oregon State, Utah, Weber State, and Utah State along with the BYU Cougars. He’s been on an official visit to Oregon State and Utah State already and will be on BYU’s campus this weekend.
“I’ve been to BYU before but now it’s more serious,” said Fauatea. “I’m taking this trip more serious and want to look at BYU to see if it’s the right place for me. I already know the coaches really well, but I want to take a look at the school and the bond between the players and how they like it over there.
“I want to take a look at the community out there in Provo. I’m going up with my parents and family members and I think Jay Tufele is going up there too. I was talking to him and he’ll be up there this weekend. I’ve been on officials to Oregon State and Utah State and those are good schools. They have good coaches. Now it’s all about comparing the schools and seeing what is best.”
Fauatea was heavily recruited by Oregon State and even committed to the Beavers last September. He announced his commit via Twitter saying:
"I would like to take this time to thank all the coaches who have offered me a scholarship to play for them. This time I would like (to) thank my Heavenly Father for the many blessings he has given me, but through much consideration and prayer, I've decided to further my education and verbally commit to Oregon State University! Thank you Coach Andersen and staff for the opportunity to play for them.”
However, last December the 6-3, 270-pound Fauatea announced on the same social media platform that he had de-committed from Oregon State saying:
“First off I would like to thank my family for supporting me through this whole recruiting process it’s been a crazy but blessed journey,” Fautea said on Twitter. “Also (I) would like to thank Coach Gary Andersen and the OSU coaching staff for all the love and support they have shown me and my family, but after discussions between my family and I I’ve decided to de-commit from Oregon State and re-open my recruitment. I will be making my decision on signing day. Thank you (for) all the support. Much alofas.”
At this point in time Fauatea has narrowed down his list from four to three schools.
“It really between BYU, Utah, and Utah State right now,” said Fauatea. “I’ll be making my decision on signing day.”
BYU came on strong late in the recruiting process for Fauatea and since then things have drastically changed.
“BYU has always been a dream school to play at,” said Fauatea. “My whole family has always been about BYU. I mean, the whole family has been about BYU all along, so I’ve always liked BYU the whole time growing up a BYU fan. When I first got my offer from BYU it was really exciting. Now I just want to compare BYU to the other schools that have offered me.”
While watching the College Football Playoff National Championship, Fauatea got a chuckle listening to BYU’s head coach, Kalani Sitake, refute jokes from his colleagues concerning returned missionaries playing football and having an advantage.
“I did watch the National Championship game and it was funny how Kalani talked about the missionaries eating ramen noodles for two years,” said Fauatea. “It was pretty funny.”
Fauatea has developed a close relationship with BYU defensive coordinator Ilaisa Tuiaki. Fauatea gives some insight into how Coach Tuiaki is different than other coaches when it comes to recruiting.
“Yeah Ilaisa is the man,” said Fauatea. “He’s just straight up with you and knows what he’s doing. When it comes to recruiting he knows what he’s doing. He understands and knows what people go through with their lives and knows how to talk to them. He doesn’t recruit every kid the same way. He recruits every kid individually based on who they are.”
A three-star prospect and Utah’s fourth-rated defensive lineman, Fauatea feels he’s more of a defensive end than tackle. Fauatea feels that although he can play the three technique he’s better suited on the outside.
“I’m 6-3, 270-pounds and play D-line,” said Fauatea. “I’m more of a Dd-end but I can play the three technique. I’m quick off the edge and have a really good run game and I’m a good run stopper.”
After facing Portland State in the 2017 season opener, BYU will be facing LSU, Utah, Wisconsin, and Utah State in the first month and change of their season. Fauatea said if he commits to BYU he’ll be ready for the grueling schedule in his first year of college football.
“Yeah, I’ll be ready and I guess we’ll see,” said Fauatea. “It’s a really good schedule. I’ve been talking to the other boys like Langi [Tuifua], Alden [Tofa], and Chaz Ah You. We’ll see what happens.”
It’s interesting that Fauatea, Langi Tuifua, Alden Tofa, and Chaz Ah You have been communicating with each other concerning college choices, primarily BYU. If Coach Sitake hauls in that group in the next few weeks it would be a trove of talent infused into the BYU football program.