His twin brother Devin received the same honor, but as a tight end. Both committed to Oregon State back in 2006 when their older cousin, BYU running back Harvey Unga, was redshirting after suffering a season-ending injury.
"We talk every so often and I've gotten phone calls from them before the Las Vegas Bowl invited us to play them," said Harvey. "We were just speculating and thinking that we might play each other and thought it would be fun to see each other again."
Harvey and his twin cousins and worked out together in the past.
"We trained a little bit during the summer together – when they got back from their missions – with Fahu [Tahi]," said Harvey. "Fahu is another relative of theirs but on their mom's side of the family. They're first cousins on their mom's side. We trained together over the summer together and it was fun to kind of catch up. We never really thought we would be meeting up to play each other then, but it's going to be a lot of fun."
Kevin has made a name for himself in his first season while playing on special teams. The Oregon State Beavers' special teams are considered one of the best cover squads in the Pac-10, and Kevin with his 18 tackles is one reason why.
During the course of this season both Kevin and Devin have received some playing time as freshmen, and both are expected to compete next year for a starting linebacker spot. Their cousin and Las Vegas Bowl counterpart could end up meeting them on the field when their teams square off.
"Yeah, I'll keep an eye out for them," said Harvey with a chuckle. "They get in there once in a while and start on special teams as far as I know, and then they get in some reps at linebacker. I haven't watched them on film, but having talked with them they both have said they've gotten in there in some games and stuff. It'll be exciting."
Harvey had some words of advice for Devin and Kevin if they ever get on the field at the same time he does.
"I just told them not to tackle me," Harvey said. "Since I'm older than they are, they owe me that respect. We're big on that in our culture: respecting our elders. We joked around about it and I told them that if I'm in there and if they're in there, to run the other way or something and let me run. It's either that or just trip in front of me so I can get around them. It's fun."
All joking aside, Harvey is excited to see his cousins in Las Vegas and also wants to enjoy his time with his Cougar teammates.
"I just want to go out and have fun," Unga said. "I think with that aspect in mind I've noticed I've had my better games when I'm having fun and enjoying my time instead of just trying to burden myself with everything that's going on and stuff. I just want to go in there and enjoy my time with my teammates and focus on what I need to do and stuff."
Of course having success on the field and playing without any nagging injuries makes the game more enjoyable, but over the course of the season Harvey has had to deal with some injury issues. To make sure he plays his best, especially if he ever has to face his two cousins on the field, he'll need to be healthy.
"The ankle is a little sore but come game time I think I'll be alright," said Harvey. "I just need to give it a couple more days of healing it, and resting it with getting treatment has made a world of difference."