Mataele Pau'u Loves the Maize and Blue

Defensive tackle <b>Mataele Pau'u</b> from Mira Costa High School in Manhatten Beach, Calif. says he loves the Michigan colors. GoBlueWolverine Magazine spoke with Pau'u Sunday night to get the latest on his early recruiting. What offers are there and is one from Ann Arbor?

"I love the Michigan colors," Mataele Pauu said. "I've always liked Michigan since I was a kid."

Pau'u (Pronounced Pow-ohh) plays tackle on defense and fullback in short yardage situations for the offense. "I get compared to 'The Fridge' all the time," Pau'u said in reference to former Chicago Bear William Perry, who was also used in a similar fashion during his playing days. Pau'u is 'Fridge' size at 6 foot 3, 295 pounds. He reports a 5.2 time in the 40 yard dash and says he can do 27 reps at 185 pounds on the bench press. "I can run faster than that 5.2," he said.

While Pau'u is getting attention mainly from Pac 10 and other West Coast schools, he does have eyes for the east. "To tell you the truth I've never been to Michigan," he said. "But I'm looking for a school with a good football team, and they don't get much better than Michigan." Pau'u reports offers from UCLA, Arizona State and San Jose State, with letters arriving from all the Pac 10 school except Stanford, and from San Diego State. "I won't go to one of those schools, though," Pau'u said of San Jose State and San Diego State. He said he's getting mail from Notre Dame and some of the Big 12 schools.

Does he have an offer from Michigan? "I got an e-mail from someone at Michigan, I don't know who it was," Pau'u said. "I think it was an offer but I'm not sure."

It could come down to a battle between the whether or not Pau'u wants to stay home or travel away for school. "My folks want me to stay close to home," he said. "I'm not quite sure what I want to do yet. I do want to take all my visits before I decide, but if it's right for me to go away than I'll do it." He said he would like to major in business. The process is early for him and he said he hasn't really checked out many of the schools on his list. "I've been to a couple of UCLA practices," he said. "But that's about it."

Pau'u reports 76 unassisted and 24 assisted tackles in his junior season. He also reports four forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, and 11 sacks. On offense he reports 30 carries for 200 yards and five touchdowns. He also reports All-State honors as a sophomore and a junior.

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