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Matt Piper and Kyle Goon
Matt Piper and Kyle Goon cover University of Utah sports teams for The Salt Lake Tribune. Matt Piper is on twitter at @matthew_piper, Kyle Goon is on twitter at @kylegoon

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Utes get commit from 2017 Bingham defensive end Langi Tuifua

As reports leaked a week and a half ago that Langi Tuifua had committed to Utah football, he tried to rein it in.

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I'm not committed yet, he said. I'm still deciding.

Turns out the Utes didn't have to wait much longer to see if the 2017 defensive line prospect from Bingham would commit after all. Tuifua called coach Ilaisa Tuiaki on Tuesday night to inform him he made up his mind: He wants to be a Ute.

"I just wanted to make sure I was making the right choice," Tuifua said in an interview with the Tribune. "I now know it's the right decision. The school has everything I really need."

At 6-foot-3 and 200 pounds, Tuifua may look a little light for defensive line, but that's in part because he's only 15 years old. His father, David Tuifua, was a defensive tackle at Ricks College and Hawaii, and the Utah staff believes the younger Tuifua will grow into his frame

A lot of what sold Tuifua on the program is family: Not only did he create some bonds with the coaching staff, but his brother goes to Utah on academic scholarship, and his sister is going to Westminster. Being close to home was important to him, as was Utah's video game programming academic offerings that he wants to pursue.

"I'm pretty set," he said. "This has been kind of my home program for a long time."

The Utes will likely have a long ride to actually sign Tuifua, who will be a sophomore on Bingham's defensive line this fall. Utah State and BYU were expressing interest after he ran the camp circuit last week including All Poly Camp. Other programs may still try to sway him over the next two-and-a-half years.

But for now, he said, he's pretty sure.

"The facilities are great, and I got to meet a lot of the coaches last week at the camps," he said. "They're all very kind. They care about you."

Kyle Goon


Twitter: @kylegoon

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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