Rated Scout’s No. 1 overall OLB in its initial 2018 player rankings on Thursday, Palaie Gaoteote is the prized linebacker prospect in the country.
And just last week, Gaoteote, who stars at Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman, made his way to Michigan's satellite camp to chat it up with U-M’s coaches – specifically -- Michigan director of player personal Tony Tuioti.
“I stopped by and talked to coach Tuioti for a little bit,” Gaoteote said. “ We are just trying to build up a relationship. Well, we already have a relationship, but we are just trying to get it a little bit stronger, It was nice meeting him for the first time.”
Adding: “He's the coach I talk to the most. I think we have the best connection because we are both Polynesian. So we can kind of relate when we talk to each other.”
Still, with plenty of time between now and national signing day 2018, Gaoteote says Michigan still is in pretty good shape in his recruitment.
“When I hear Michigan, I think big time football,” Gaoteote said. “They will definitely be somewhere maybe in my top-five.”
As of right now, Gaoteote says he has no plans to visit U-M. However, that doesn’t mean he doesn’t want to checkout Michigan’s campus someday soon, he admits.
“Oh man, I would want to check everything out,” Gaoteote said of U-M. “I would want to see the facilities as well as the school’s campus. Basically I would want to see the academic stuff and if I could fit in there.”
And distance will not factor in his decision, he says.
“I’m honestly open to anyone,” Gaoteote said. “I will play anywhere. As long as I look into everything and everything fits in perfectly, I’ll go the distance for a college.”
Gaoteote says he plans to announce his commitment on national signing day 2018.