Fua went to BYU's Junior Day with some interest in BYU and what the Cougars had to offer, but following the one-day camp BYU came to the forefront in his mind.
"That was probably the biggest thing for him, I think," said Alani's father George regarding Alani's Junior Day experience. "He met with Bronco Mendenhall and he felt something that was very strong regarding what BYU was and the opportunities he would have there. Coach Mendenhall let him know how strongly he felt that BYU was the best place for him as a person and for his own personal growth, and that stuck with him."
What also stuck with Fua were his good friends and soon-to-be Cougars Zac Stout and Kyle Van Noy. Both players have been hounding him for some time to commit to BYU, and he finally did what they had been waiting for.
According to his father, however, it was what he felt while at BYU that confirmed what he thought about the program while growing up. "He's always liked BYU and so have we as a family," related George. "My other son Sione was very close to going to BYU but chose Stanford, which was a good decision for him, but we're really honored as a family and I am as a father that [Alani's] going to play for BYU. He's going to a place that will help him grow as a person, help prepare him for a mission, and I couldn't be more happy for him or proud of him."
Fua can play a variety of positions, although he's seen most of his experience at defensive end. Cougar coaches have told him that they don't have him pegged for any certain position currently, but will watch to see how he develops and then decide when he shows up in preparation for the 2010 season.
Fua had made up his mind to commit to BYU as of Monday, but held off when the thought occurred to him that Coach Mendenhall was probably busy with Family Home Evening, which Fua wanted to respect. "Yeah, he didn't want to bother him on family night," confirmed George.
TBS will follow up with Alani himself Tuesday night after he gets done with practice.