Offensive lineman and Scout's number 3 ranked center for the 2012 class, Hiva Lutui, has been committed to UCLA since August, but with UCLA's recent coaching change, the Texas big man is still taking visits and just finished up a weekend at Utah.
"The visit went even better than I expected. I'd rate it a 9. They showed me around campus and I watched practice. Their practice reminds me a lot of our practice. They really take everything to the next level with their intensity."
Lutui enjoyed the chance to meet with Utah's coaches and expressed how much he feels they want him to be a Ute.
"I got to talk to the coaches one on one. I can tell that they really want me bad. They said I could have a chance to start right away and I feel like I can come in and do that."
Lutui was hosted by his cousin, current Utah running back Tauni Vakapuna on the visit.
"I've spent a lot of time with him before. Whenever I come out to Utah, I always stay with his family."
The highly regarded offensive lineman stressed being comfortable as a necessity for him when picking a school and he felt just that while in Salt Lake City.
"Something that is big for me is finding a place that I can see myself living for 4 or 5 years and maybe even after that if I were to get a job or stay in that area. I didn't feel homesick at all while I was out here (in Utah), and I think that was huge. I have a lot of family in both Utah and in California. I just need to find which area is most comfortable for me and then I'll be good."
Lutui also visited with high school teammate Polo Manukainiu, and the two of them talked about playing together and playing in Utah.
"Polo is really liking Utah. We talked about what fits each of us best and possibly playing together."
Despite the visit, Lutui maintains that he is still committed to the Bruins, but will keep his options open and continue to take visits with Utah right in the thick of things.
"I'm still keeping my commitment to UCLA. I want to see what all my options are and make the right choice. I'm going to take my visits see what is right for me."
Lutui Gives Utah a 9
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