Recruiting Reset: Defense

Utah is looking to fill a number of spots on the defensive side of the ball for 2015

Defensive End
Commits
Caleb Repp
Chad Hekking
Tuli Wily-Matagi
Targets
Gabe Reid (Offer)
Simi Moala (Offer)
Tipa Galea'i (Offer)
Calvin Brown (Offer)

All three of Utah's defensive end commits could end up at different spots with Repp possibly ending up at tight end or receiver, Hekking at tight end, linebacker, or even quarterback, and Wily-Matagi at tight end or quarterback. For now, they're all projected on the defensive line. Repp and Hekking are solid, and while Wily-Matagi is taking trips, a flip would be a surprise. Reid is a local sign and send and has a couple of new Pac 12 schools jump into the picture recently. Between Utah, BYU, Stanford, the Washington schools, and now Arizona, things are very much up in the air. Utah, BYU, and Stanford have been on Reid the longest and the prevailing thought is that he'll pick between those three eventually. Moala visited Utah officially, and has the Utes towards the top of his list, but may be a backup plan right now. He could also end up on the offensive side of the ball as tackle. Galea'i had Utah as his leader throughout the summer, but that interest has waned as new offers, including TCU and Oklahoma State, have rolled in. TCU looks like the the top school today. Calvin Brown is out of Florida and also has had Utah high on his list, but has been quiet in recent months and where he's leaning or where things are at with the Utes is unknown at this time.



Defensive Tackle
Commits: None
Targets
Dillon Faamatau (Offer)

Utah isn't aggressively targeting any defensive tackles in this class. With at least six interior defensive linemen returning next season, and many of them underclassmen, they'll likely end up waiting until 2016, but are still pursuing Faamatua, who may end up visiting in January. The 2015 batch out west is as weak as it has been in a decade as well, so that's a big reason for a lack of DT pursuit.

Linebacker
Commits
Quinn Fabrizio
Cody Barton
Targets
Tevis Bartlett (Offer)
Christian Folau (Offer)
JayJay Wilson (Offer)
Chris Hart (Offer)
Victor Alexander (Offer- Committed to UCLA)

Barton has been committed since the summer and will join his big brother at Utah. The Utes have encouraged a mission, but Barton hasn't shown much interest in doing so. We'll see if he ends up being a greyshirt possibility as it gets closer to signing day. Fabrizio committed to Utah in November over a host of schools and isn't looking around. Bartlett visited Utah officially and it helped move the Utes up his list. The versatile kid from Wyoming could end up as a defensive end or tight end, but projects as a linebacker for now. He has a final six that includes the Utes along with the likes of Oregon and Washington (both of which he has visited). A decision is likely in the next week and while Utah isn't in the worst spot, a commitment would be a bit of a surprise. Wilson visited Utah this weekend and also has trips coming to Arizona State and Colorado. Utah is in a decent spot, but the Sun Devils are a real threat. Folau visited this weekend as well, and with Gary Andersen's move from Wisconsin to Oregon State, Utah looks like the probably final destination. Anything other than him staying home would be a surprise. Hart was close to committing to Utah after his official visit, and now a couple of other schools have drawn even with the Utes. With the likes of Michigan State, Louisville, and Texas A&M in the mix, Utah has their work cut out for them. Alexander has been committed to UCLA for a long time, but has consistently said that he'd take trips with Utah being one of them. A flip wouldn't be a giant shock, but he's seemed more committed to the Bruins recently than he was earlier this fall.

Cornerback
Commits
Kyle Fulks
Cory Butler
Targets: None (sorta)

Fulks and Butler could end up playing receiver, but will start out in the secondary to begin with. As JC guys, they're expected to compete for playing time right away. Throw South Carolina transfer Ahmad Christian in the mix and the Utes have pretty much filled their quota. Utah has a couple of targets out there that we've got projected at other positions that could end up playing cornerback.

Safety
Commits
Michael Jacquet
Philip Afia
T.J. Kautai
Targets
Tyson Cisrow (Offer)

With three safety prospects on board already, the Utes won't fret about not bringing in anyone else, especially with Tevin Carter returning next season. Jacquet is an athlete that could end up at a few different spots while Afia is a natural safeties. Kautai could end up at linebacker after returning from his mission, but we'll leave him at safety for now. With all of these high school commits, the Utes' future at safety should be in good hands. Cisrow visited officially and has been close to committing and could end up being a package deal with Chris Hart, but things seemed to have cooled a bit recently.


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