VAUGHT: Fatu Turituri seeks #1 spot at left guard

As soon as he got to Lexington, Fatu Turituri knew he had a problem he had not anticipated when he signed to play football for the Wildcats.

As soon as he got to Lexington, Fatu Turituri knew he had a problem he had not anticipated when he signed to play football for the Wildcats.

No, he was not upset when offensive line coach Paul Dunn left for Pittsburgh. No, he was not discouraged by the talent he found on the team after arriving from Los Angeles Harbor College, a junior college in California.

It was the weather. The cold temperatures were not exactly like those in his native America Samoa.

"The cold weather is really different and hard to adjust to. I'm still not used to it," he said. "I had to buy some clothes after I got here. I had to buy three or four coats and some pants just to get warm. I was freezing."

His academic load was also a bit more difficult than he anticipated, but he's handling that. His other big adjustment came in the weight room.

His junior college is known for producing quality offensive linemen. He never worried that he might not be as strong as the normal Southeastern Conference lineman.

"Back in junior college you basically work out on your own," Turituri said. "Over here, you get a much better workout to make you physical and strong so you can play the game better. It's a lot different from what I was used to. But I can tell it has already made me stronger and better in my moves.

"I thought I was strong when I got here. But once I got in Kentucky's workout, I found out I was weak. I thought I lifted before, but here they really lift."

Turituri is currently No. 2 on the depth chart at left guard. By the time spring practice ends, he could easily be No. 1. But when you talk to him, he stresses winning is more important than anything and you believe him.

"I like what I see here. I am trying to bring everybody together as a unit. We don't want to fight each other. We have to be together as one to win. We have to depend on each other," Turituri said. "I'm not trying to tell people what to do, just trying to help keep us together. Where I am from, you know if everyone sticks together, you can accomplish a lot. That's what we need here so we can win a lot of games."


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