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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Sleeper from Tonga has three offers

For Euless (Texas) Trinity defensive tackle Siosaia Tuipulotu, the approaching decision of where to play football in college will be an important one. However, just one year ago he was faced with another decision that has become life-changing: whether or not to play football at all.

As a native of the Kingdom of Tonga in the South Pacific, Tuipulotu grew up playing rugby. It wasn’t until he moved to Texas from Tonga last year that he became exposed to the game of football.

“I didn’t know football at all,” Tuipulotu said. “I played rugby my whole life. I came over here to Texas in the summer and joined the football team and started working out.”

Not only has he enjoyed his new sport, Tuipulotu sees a future in it.

“Football is awesome,” he said. “I like it. I love it. I just want to get a good future and become an NFL player. I just want to do my thing.”

The decision is already paying off. After just one year of exposure to the sport, Tuipulotu has already picked up offers from Purdue, Utah and SMU and is also hearing from BYU and Buffalo.

Due to his Polynesian heritage, Utah is standing out to him early on but he is very open to any school that has interest in him.

“I’m not sure what my favorites are right now,” he said. “I would say Utah but I’m not sure. My mind would be changed if I saw any college come that looks pretty good to me.”

Already one of the strongest players on his high school team, the 6-foot-2, 285-pounder is working on getting his speed and quickness to match his strength where he benches 325 pounds, squats 495 and cleans 295.

As far as summer camps, Tuipulotu only has one scheduled.

“I’m just going to one camp,” he said. “I’m going to the Poly camp in Utah. It’s an All-Polynesian camp.”

As Tuipulotu continues to learn the games, college coaches will continue to learn about his unique talents and immense upside.

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