Brighton High School in Salt Lake City, Utah has been one of the best D1 football player producing programs in the state of Utah over the past 5 years, as 6 Bengals have signed LOI's at D1 programs over that time period. Brighton looks to continue that success in the coming years, as in 2016 alone they have 4 players with current offers from multiple P5 programs. One of those 4 is SS/OLB Jackson Kaufusi, and he picked up his second offer last week from a very familiar program just 20 minutes north of his school.
"(When Utah) offered it was a surprise to be honest! I hadn't really heard from them and then Coach Scalley followed me on Twiter, and we were able to get in contact on the phone and then he said I was being offered. I was way shocked, but I'm excited about it! It's been a huge dream of mine since I was a kid growing up hearing about my dad playing at Utah, and it's just been a huge dream." Kaufusi's dad, Jeff, played for the Utes from 1994-1996, but that's not the end of Jackson's connection with the Utes, as the Kaufusi family has produced close to ten football players in the past 25 years, many of which played for the Utes. That connection to Utah isn't lost on Jackson, as he understands the significance of being able to play at the same school as his father. "To possibly play at the same school as my father means a lot. To be able to wear the same uniform as him would be amazing, and hopefully I could be as good as he was."
Since Kaufusi hadn't heard much from Utah before being extended an offer, his relationship with the coaching staff is just starting, and they're trying to figure out where he'd fit in at Utah. "The coaches haven't really said where they'd want me to play in college. Coach Scalley asked what I see myself playing and I just said the outside linebacker/strong safety position I play at Brighton." Kaufusi also hasn't been able to take any visits to the U over the off season, but was hopeful he'd be able to attend last Saturday's scrimmage. "I have not taken a visit there yet, but if I get home from St George in time for the scrimmage on Saturday I think me and my family will go."
With as much talent as Brighton has had over the past couple seasons, Kaufusi hasn't had as much of a role as maybe he would have liked, but he plans on stepping up as a senior and having a big season, on and off the field. "I expect to have a bigger role this season than last. I also plan on being a vocal leader and that type of senior that is an example to others. I think that is the bigger role for me." Kaufusi spent much of last season playing OLB/SS, but also saw some action at running back behind 2015 5 star Osa Masina, and 2017 4 star Sione Heimuli-Lund. Kaufusi's calling card in college will likely be at OLB, as he currently measures in at 6'2-195, and will likely grow even more between now and the time he enrolls in college. As for his decision time frame, he says he's in no rush. "I'm pretty sure I'm gonna take my time and use my visits. I'll weigh all my option and then see what's the best fit for me."
Kaufusi "Surprised" by Local Offer
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