Cottonwood's Fili will play in Army All-American Bowl
Defensive tackle is one of state's most sought-after players
Now, the rest of the country is taking notice of Simi Fili.
A massive defensive tackle for Cottonwood High, Fili is one of the most often-recruited players in the state. He has coaches from Arizona State to Tennessee and all points in between chasing him and hoping to get him into one of their extra large uniforms.
Last week, the 6-foot-3, 330-pound senior was honored and invited to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Texas in January.
Fili, close friends with former Cottonwood quarterback Alex Cate, has listed his school, Oklahoma State, at the top of a short list of schools he might play for next year. Others include Tennessee, Oregon, Colorado and Arizona State. He still has a few more months to consider his ultimate destination, however, and will wait until the high school season is over before he gets serious about making that decision.
For now, Fili is just trying to help the Colts return to the level of success it has enjoyed for the past couple of seasons. After a tough start to the season, Cottonwood has rattled off four straight wins and is now ranked among the top five 4A schools.
The hefty lineman is a big part of that success and is just the kind of player the U.S. Army All-American Bowl looks for.
"Simi Fili is one of the top defensive tackle prospects in the nation," said Garrett Shea, Director of the U.S. Army All-American Bowl. "He has the prototypical size for the position, and is extremely powerful and quick. He controls the line of scrimmage and stuffs the run while taking on double and triple team blocks. He plays with a tenacity rarely seen, making him almost impossible to stop. Simi Fili is a terrific athlete and the Bowl is proud to have him join the U.S. Army All-American class of 2007."
One of the strongest players in the country, Fili has recorded a 435 pound bench press and pressed 185 pounds 69 times.
A four-star recruit by Scout.com, Fili is ranked as the No. 8 defensive tackle in the country.
"The youngster craves contact so much and stays in such good shape that he plays on an organized Rugby team in the off-season," said Scout.com national analyst Allen Wallace. "Fili is dominant as an inside technique (1 or 2) on the defensive front. His strength commands a double team and he is still very hard to move."
The All-American Bowl will be played January 6 in Texas and will be televised by NBC.
This week, though, Fili and the Colts are worried about a challenging matchup at conference power Highland tonight at 7.
"It's pretty exciting," Fili said of the invitation to play in the all-star game. "It's an honor to play in that game."