Wednesday, October 04, 2006
William Tukuafu (Mesa CC) Enjoys Eugene
One of the many visitors the Oregon Ducks hosted during the recent Oklahoma game was Mesa (Ariz.) Community College defensive end prospect William Tukuafu. The 6-foot-5, 275-pounder has already taken official visits to three of his top five teams, but Oregon was his first trip on a game day. The game turned out to be a photo finish. Did Tukuafu enjoy himself? Duck Sports Authority gives you the latest.
"It was a great visit. I had a lot of un over there," said Tukuafu.
The December graduate – who has three years of eligibility remaining – told us that he visited Eugene by himself.
"I went alone," he said. "It's pretty much my decision."
Tukuafu was hosted by Oregon offensive lineman Fenuki Tupou.
"We just hung out, went to watch a movie and hung out with the boys and stuff," he told us.
In a bit of a break from the norm, Tukuafu took some quiet time on his visit.
"It was a great atmosphere. I liked the area," he said. "I asked if I could go fishing, so I went fishing instead of going to some of the meetings. I went fishing with Brandon (freshman tight end Brandon Bair), who is also an LDS guy."
As nearly all of the other visitors have said, the highlight of the trip for Tukuafu was the game itself.
"The game and the comeback, event though the officials got (Oklahoma)," he said. "It was a great game I think. It was crazy!"
The noise created at Autzen Stadium was something that surprised him.
"They've got some wild fans! It was something I had never seen before. Everyone was going wild and you couldn't hear anything," Tukuafu said. "I just watched the defensive calls coming in by hand signals because they couldn't hear anything."
The big defensive end also spent some time talking with the Oregon coaches, and liked what he heard.
"They just talked to me about the program and how important it was that I could fit in with their program," he said. "They said that I'm what they need. They are looking for defensive end that can play right away, and they said I fit that profile. They say I can be a three-year starter. I like that."
Despite all of those positives, there was one thing that concerned Tukuafu.
"It's quite a ways from home, so that was kind of something that I have to take a look at," he told us. "Is it going to be easy for my family to come see my games and support me that way?"
Tukuafu gave the visit a rating that many fans might consider pretty low, but you have to take it in the proper context.
"It was about a seven, it was up there," he said "Before I just looked at them like a four, but when I went over there it was different than what I expected it to be."
He told us that he did not commit on the visit, but that he will be making a decision soon.
"No, not yet," he said. "I'm going to take one more visit and after I take that trip I'll commit. I'm going to visit Cal, but I don't have a date set up yet."
Tukuafu is having a difficult time separating his favorites at this point.
"That's hard to say," he told us. "ASU (Arizona State), Oregon, Cal, U of A (Arizona) and BYU are pretty much the same right now."
He's expects to know after the California visit.
"Just after that last visit," he said. "I'm waiting to see what happens after that last visit."
Duck Sports Authority will keep in touch with William Tukuafu as he nears a commitment decision.