Recruiting: Cougs get JC boost at tight end

A FIRST-TEAM junior college All-American tight end with big-time blocking skills is headed to the Pac-10. The 6-4, 250-pounder knocked heads the last two seasons for national JC powerhouse Snow College, which went 11-1 in 2008 and dropped the NJCAA title game in double-overtime. The lad's academics are fully in order, so he'll be enrolling at his new school next month.

Peter Tuitupou, saw recruiting pick up quite a bit following his standout sophomore season and hauled in an offer from New Mexico State, but Washington State came calling recently and he tripped to Pullman last weekend.

"I went up there to visit them and I had a great time," Tuitupou said. "It was great and they offered me while I was there.

"I thought about committing, but then I decided to wait just a week to see what else happened."

What almost happened was an offer from Washington State's cross-state rival, the University of Washington.

"Coach (Chris) Tormey had been talking me for a little while, but he got fired," Tuitupou said. "The new offensive coordinator (Jim Michalczik) up there has been talking to me for a little over a week and they were looking at my transcripts to see if I could make it up there in January, but things just didn't work out so I just called the Wazzu coaches and gave them my verbal.

"I'll sign my paperwork tomorrow and I'll be up there next month to enroll in my classes so I can play in spring ball."

Tuitupou will have three years to play two once he arrives in Pullman.

Tuitupou prepped at Mountain View High in Orem, Utah, and signed with the Unversity of Utah coming out of high school, but was unable to qualify.

"Snow is in the same town I lived in, so it was a good situation for me," Tuitupou told "The coaches are great and they always get their guys moved on to the next level."

As a sophomore in 2008, Tuitupou rarely left the field for Snow, contributing as a solid edge blocker for the Badgers' power running game while also totaling 21 receptions for 250 yards and four touchdowns.

"I have good strength and I run good routes," Tuitupou said. "I can do whatever a team wants me to do."

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