Vainuku gets early Dawg offer

He's a bruiser on both sides of the ball and Eureka (Ca.) LB/FB Soma Vainuku is a player on the rise in recruiting circles. On Wednesday Washington became the first to offer the talented football player and he spoke about the offer and where things stand in regards to recruiting.

"It was great getting the first offer," an excited Vainuku told "I talked with the Washington coaches and they said they loved what I could do and how I played the game and they wanted to offer me a full scholarship."

Vainuku is a player that could end up on either side of the ball.

As a running back in 2007 Vainuku rushed for 1,500 yards and 27 touchdowns and as a junior in 2008 he had over 800 yards and 14 touchdowns on the ground and posted 34 tackles, one forced fumble and one interception from his linebacker position.

"Coach (Jeff) Mills told me I could play on either side of the ball for them," Vainuku said. "He said they like me at linebacker or as a standup defensive end or even at fullback so I could play almost anywhere for them."

Vainuku's cousin is Rey Maualaga and Soma said that Rey's success has had a profound affect on his life.

"I always looked up to him as a kid," Vainuku admitted. "When he signed with USC I was like 'I sure hope I get the chance to play college football' and now I have that chance so it's pretty amazing."

Besides his offer from the Huskies, Vainuku is getting heavy interest from UCLA, Arizona State, Colorado State, BYU and Utah.

Being LDS, Vainuku said hearing from the last two schools is a privilege and an honor.

"I haven't decided yet what I'm going to do about my mission," Vainuku said. "It's important and something my family and I have to talk about, but I'm not sure if I will take it or not."

Vaikunu does have family in the Seattle area so he plans to make a trip up during the spring to check out some of Washington's practices and to see the area.

We'll have more from Vainuku in the coming weeks as the spring evaluation period gets underway.

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