4A MVP: Nate Fakahafua, Highland
If there's such thing as a perfect football player, this Highland senior might be the guy.
As if being hard-working, intelligent and unselfish weren't enough, Fakahafua is also one of the best athletes in the state. His dominance helped the Rams win their first state title since 1986.
"Right now he's pointed in the right direction and you know that's destined for great things," said Highland coach Brody Benson.
The bigger the stage the better he performed, and his fourth-down touchdown catch in overtime will go down as one of the best plays in state championship game history.
Everybody knew the ball was going to Fakahafua on fourth-and-10, but Mountain Crest simply couldn't stop it.
"He willed us to win. He wasn't going to be denied," said Benson.
That 25-yard touchdown grab was the exclamation point on a 200-yard receiving day for Fakahafua, who finished the season with 1,351 receiving yards and 17 touchdowns.
He was just as dominant on the defensive side of the ball, racking up 62 tackles and 17.5 sacks.
"I've never had a kid on both sides of the ball have an impact the way he does," said Benson. "We've had some great kids who've been two-way guys, but to have him turn around and do what he did on offense and with no rest flip over and be as dominant as he was on defense was unbelievable, and the kids fed off of that."
Fakahafua has verbally committed to the University of Utah, and will likely play receiver. Whatever position he ends up playing though, the Utes have landed a high-character player who has a bright future ahead of him.