BREAKING NEWS: An 'Oga Party' coming to Idaho

ONE VERY ACTIVE trench warrior is coming to Moscow and the ETA on the d-tackle looks to be measured in days rather than months. The 6-foot-3, 305-pounder who starred at Auburn-Riverside High in Auburn, Wash. during his prep days and later in junior college at Dixie State and Garden City, has verbally committed to the Vandals. His plan is to enroll next month at Idaho and get ready for spring ball.

Oga Faumui says it was an easy decision to choose Idaho, so much so that in his mind he already committed when d-tackles coach Johnny Nansen was by for an in-home visit a few weeks back. Faumui said he was surprised this past weekend when Robb Akey asked what his plan was and if he was coming on board.

Faumui reiterated his desire to don the silver and gold.

"He said. 'Welcome to the family!' and then he announced it to the rest of the group there. Everybody got excited when that happened," said Faumui. "He's a great guy. He's a fun guy and he jokes around a little but when it times to get down to business, it's all business with him. And that's what I like about him.

"They were all treating me like a Vandal already. And I thought if they were treating me that well already, imagine what it would be like when I get there and I am a Vandal...Like I told (Nansen), the only thing stopping me from signing, is that today isn't the Signing Day."

NANSEN WAS A KEY factor in his decision, Faumui said.

"My dad liked him a lot," said Faumui. "He knows that I'll listen to a Samoan coach. I'm not saying I wouldn't listen to another coach or anything like that. I'm just saying if you have a Samoan kid and a Samoan coach, I'm going to have lot of respect because of the way I've been raised. We can relate to each other. And whatever the coach says goes."

Faumui originally committed to the Pac-10 and Washington State last year over Hawaii but academic hurdles prevented him from joining the Cougars. He sat out this past season to work on getting his academic house in order. Faumui said he expects to have his AA wrapped up in a few weeks.

"I'm taking a winter session course and I should be done by Jan. 9. From what I read, I'm a midyear (transfer) all I know is I should be able to go up there right after that," said Faumui, who will have 2-to-play-2 at Idaho.

Faumui said he's currently checks in at 6-3, 305 after in effect using a redshirt season in '07 and that his ideal playing weight is somewhere between 275-290, a range he plans to hit sometime after he arrives in Moscow and, hopefully, before the spring session.

FAUMUI ORIGINALLY went to Dixie State College in Utah out of high school but the school went D-II in 2006. Dixie's bowl opponent in '05, Garden City, started recruiting Faumui for the '06 campaign right after the bowl game ended. Literally.

"As soon as the game was over I think we went over and started to recruit him," Garden City assistant coach Brian Hill told last year. "He's a super kid, a high motor kid and not just that way in games, he's like that every day in practice. He's relentless to the football. He has a great attitude and he's a leadership type of kid on and off the field, too."

Faumui carded 47 tackles in '06 at Garden City, with four sacks, another four tackles for loss and a forced fumble, earning second team all-conference honors his sophomore season. He could even be a three technique type of player at Idaho -- Hill said back in February he has quicks and athleticism more often seen in a defensive end.

"I don't know what they (Idaho) like about me but me on the field and off the field are two completely different people," said Faumui. "Off the field, we'll go have lunch together but on the field, if you're not wearing the same color as me, even if you're my brother, then I don't know you. The way I look at it either you do your job or someone is going to do it for you.

"All I've got to say is it's a blessing. It's another opportunity and it feels great to be a Vandal. I can't wait to get up there."

  • Faumui dominated the SPSL trenches during his prep career, leading the league in tackles for loss in '04. He was named the Defensive Lineman of the Year in the SPSL North Division his senior season.

    Oga Faumui profile

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