Honolulu (Hawaii) Kaiser offensive lineman Michael Eletise (6-3, 305) is one of the most dominant players in the West, the region’s top guard prospect in his class.
As physical and nasty as he is on the field, off the field, Eletise still has moments where he feels like he’s living a dream.
“Every time I talk to a college coach, I get excited and a little nervous. Its like ‘I’m talking to this college coach’ and its just so overwhelming because I never expected my recruitment to be like this. It’s just all so humbling.”
UCLA had Eletise on campus in March most recently and running backs coach Kennedy Polamalu was on the Islands to check in on Eletise.
“Coach Polamalu was at the school and at practice (Monday),” said Eletise. “He’s recruiting me with Coach (Adrian) Klemm out. We have a pretty good relationship.”
And while Klemm has been off the grid for a couple months, that hasn’t dinged Eletise’s interest in the Bruins.
“Of course I’m still considering UCLA,” said Eletise. “It’s a great program and I really like UCLA. They’re a really good team.
“Coach (Johnny) Nansen at USC said they just want to evaluate me some more and they could offer me,” said Eletise. “Oregon wants to do the same. I may get back to Los Angeles to see USC and UCLA this summer.”
“The Northwest trip was an amazing trip,” said Eletise. “It’s different from Hawaii because there are a lot of evergreen trees and lakes and it was colder, but it was beautiful. We did a lot of driving. Our rental car had five miles on it when we got it, and we drove over 700 miles in three days. But it was all worth it.”
The Ducks haven’t offered Eletise but the time in Eugene was good for him.
“Oregon’s facilities are amazing and off the charts,” said Eletise. The practices were good and the coaches were super cool. Everything about it was amazing and awesome. Coach (Steve) Greatwood is recruiting me and he said they want to watch me more in my senior year.”
Oregon State then had Eletise on campus, and the Beavers have a connection with Eletise, with offensive line coach T.J. Woods a former player at Azusa Pacific when Eletise’s father, a pastor, was a chaplain for the APU football team.
“My dad and Coach Woods know each other and he went to my dad’s stuff when he was the chaplain,” said Eletise. “Oregon State was amazing and the coaches are so family oriented. You could feel the family atmosphere. It was just a good trip.”
Washington also got Eletise to visit and that trip went well too.
“I went for their Junior Day and it was an amazing day. We saw practice and everything on campus. We got to see the coach’s coach. Coach (Keith) Bhonapha and Coach (Chris) Strausser are recruiting me and sometimes I talk to Coach Pete (Chris Petersen). They’re coming to Hawaii soon,” said Eletise.
Eletise will return to the mainland during the summer for some more visits.
“I want to visit some of the schools in the middle of the country, like Nebraska and maybe Michigan and then some in the South like Auburn, schools I wouldn’t be able to easily get to,” said Eletise.
Then he’ll be in Oregon for The Opening Finals, which he punched his ticket after a stellar showing at the Los Angeles Regionals.
“I was ecstatic when I was invited and it was humbling,” said Eletise. “I wanted to cry, I was so happy. I had a good day and got invited and it means a lot to me. Now I’m hoping some of my boys from Hawaii like Sean Auwae and Nate Herbig get open too.”
Eletise said the next step in summer is to start trimming the list down a bit.
“After my unofficial visits, I’ll start narrowing it down,” said Eletise. “I want to give everyone a fair trade. Its still so early in the process so I’m trying to figure out who I like the most. I’m talking to a lot of colleges and they’re all right up there. I’ll probably narrow it down to a top 10 or top 15, then down to a top five, where I’ll visit and then to like a top three.”
Already invited to the UnderArmour All-America Game, Eletise said a decision would like come closer to Signing Day instead of in Florida.
“I just want to make sure I go through all of the process before I decide,” said Eletise.