While past records may not reflect well on the Salt Lake Cottonwood program, the year of 2004 was certainly was one to remember; and the future might never appear more bright.
That is mainly due to one of the best offensive backfields you will find across the country in quarterback Alex Cate and running back Stanley Havili, both of whom have already begun to gain momentum as two of the best in the country at their respective positions.
The Iowa Hawkeyes are one program that has already begun to keep close tabs on the duo, which may seem like unfamiliar territory to many fans of the black and gold. As many of you have witnessed in the past, it can sometimes come down to family connections.
No Iowa Hawkeye fan can forget the signature of tight end Anthony Moeaki this past February; one that proved not only pivotal to the Class of 2005, but now may also pay huge dividends in the Class of 2006. Moeaki's cousin is Salt Lake Cottonwood running back Stanley Havili.
"I just spoke to the recruiting coordinator at Iowa last week," added Scott Cate, Alex's father. "He said they really liked Stanley on film, and that he is one of the best backs they have seen in the country. They were impressed with his combination of power, speed, and balance."
Havili (6'1.5/220/4.55) (pictured with Tony Moeaki) rushed for 1.850 yards and 20 touchdowns on 170 plus carries this past fall. Holding offers from Utah, BYU, Vanderbilt, as well as receiving strong interest from Purdue and Colorado among others to this point, shows Havili certainly is well on his way to a highly contested recruitment.
"Iowa is just waiting for Stanley to take the ACT this spring, as well as improve his grade in a class he is retaking currently. Once they see those results, I'm more than confident they will be joining the picture. I'll also have no reservation in saying Stanley will be open to playing out in the Midwest, which I believe is largely due to having family there," stated Cate.
Lastly, Cate was willing to explain to readers why Havili is such a special talent at running back.
"There are two things with Stanley that make him so special. First, he has the best body lean I have seen in any running back at the high school level. No defender can get a shot at his legs, and you won't be able to tackle him in the upper body. Otherwise, he will knock you to the ground. Secondly, his field vision is just extraordinary. He is able to see the hole, explode through it, and once he is gone, believe me, he is gone," said Cate.
When looking at Alex Cate, it is not often you will see the Iowa Hawkeye coaching staff expand out west to recruit any position, especially the quarterback position.
"The reason I know Iowa and other Big Ten programs have taken an interest in Alex is they know he is a bad weather quarterback," explained the elder Cate. "Normally, they are afraid to recruit a quarterback out West because they don't believe he will be able to play in the cold and rugged conditions, but Alex has shown that he can."
Cate also had a very successful junior campaign, which ended in the state finals where he threw for 470 yards and five touchdowns. On the season, Cate threw for more than 3500 yards and 30 touchdowns.
"Arizona has offered Alex a scholarship, as well as the area programs in BYU and Utah. I know Walt Harris and Urban Meyer are very high on him, and both Purdue and Georgia have sent a lot of inquiries as of late."
"Alex plans to attend the Elite 11 Camp tryout at Cal later this spring, and we have to decide on what camps he will attend this summer. I know that both Iowa and Purdue really want him to attend one day of their camp badly," stated Cate.
Alex, who stands at 6'2 and 202 pounds, will graduate in December of 2005, allowing him to participate in spring ball at the college of his choice in 2006. As far as the possibility of the star studded duo following the same path in college, never say never.
"I certainly believe it something they have looked at, and will consider. I don't think there is any guarantee or any writing on the wall that states they have to play with each other, but if the situation arose, it is something they'd have to look at."
Moeaki/Havili Connection Exists in Class of 2007
Hawkeye fans will certainly look forward to following the recruitment of a prospect in a new territory, but most likely, it will not stop in the Class of 2006.
Class of 2007 stand-out defensive tackle Simi Fili, a cousin of Moeaki's and Havili's, already shows signs of being one of the nation's best.
"Simi stands at 6'3.5 and 325 pounds, and he is the thinnest 325 pounds you've ever seen," said Cate. "He is amazingly athletic for what he can do at his age, and he is truly a genetic freak. He recently did 32 reps of 185 pounds on the bench."
Ttwo other ‘junior's-to-be' to keep an eye on will be a set of twins in Budda Tuinei (6'4 380) and Teaucom Tuinei (6'4 360) who play along the offensive line.