6-7 DL prospect loved Wazzu visit, eats a ton

WITH A WSU OFFER in hand, Simi Moala -- a three-star, tall and rangy 6-7, 245-pound DL prospect -- was out on the Palouse this past weekend and gave his crimson visit experience top marks. And in talking to Moala, Los Angeles has nothin’ on Pullman when it comes to the culinary arts.

Moala didn’t mess around at Washington State this weekend when it came time to eat.

“The food was great -- there was a lot to eat (laugh), that was the great part,” said Moala. “I’ve never tasted pizza like that… this one place had these nice steaks, and this other place had this ice cream -- I’ve never tasted anything like that ice cream in California either.”

Coming from Los Angeles and Cathedral High, Moala said the college town experience was something new and one that grew on him immediately.

“Oh man, the trip was very fun,” said Moala. “I wasn’t really expecting or used to the country (setting) but I really liked the atmosphere, the whole town has WSU gear everywhere and it started at the airport.

“And I didn’t realize there were so many players there from California and especially from LA. One of the players (Ivan McLennan) played with my older brother, Filipo Moala, in high school, (Leuzinger).”

During the game, Moala focused in on the Cougar defensive line and saw both the starters and liberally rotated second unit get after Oregon QB Marcus Mariota, sacking him seven times.

“I’ve never seen d-linemen sack Mariota left and right like that,” said Moala. “It was nice to see that… And (Daniel Ekuale and Darryl Paulo) also had great games, (Paulo’s) little brother (Darrin Paulo) was on the visit as well. He’s huge.”

Moala spent a lot of his time with WSU d-line coach Joe Salave’a and said he’s developed a strong bond with the former NFL player.

“I talked a lot with Coach Joe.. and had a chance to sit down with Coach Mike Leach one-on-one, too. They told me how they felt about me and how important I could be to their program. They really welcomed me to Pullman,” said Moala.

At 6-foot-7, it would seem the offensive line might hold the brightest football future but he said schools including WSU are looking at him on the d-line.

“Washington State when I did the camp at their school, they did put me on the o-line one time,” said Moala. “They said I had a natural kick step, a natural pass step. I’ve never blocked in my life (laugh).

“Most of the schools are telling me d-end but probably when I get to college, get bulked up and move me to a three-technique. I think Washington State is mostly thinking defensive end,” said Moala, who went on to note the Cougar defensive line is made up primarily of juniors and seniors, while the secondary is “all young.”

As good a trip as it was, Moala, who also holds offers from Miami and Utah, said he’s not close to making a decision and he still wants to wait to see if the local LA schools come calling with a scholie offer.

“Not anytime soon, maybe the very last day or the very last minute. It was a very good experience over the weekend, though,” said Moala, who said he “hung out with everyone” on the team, naming Chandler Leniu, Hercules Mata’afa and Ngalu Tapa in particular.

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