Utah and BYU both want Skyridge center Logan Sagapolu, but his focus is on a state title chase

Leah Hogsten | The Salt Lake Tribune Skyridge High School's Logan Sagapolu works out with the team Wednesday, August 8, 2018. Sagapolu was not ranked among the top instate recruits until June, when he went from unranked to No. 4. Sagapolu plays tackle and center, which can be a hard position to evaluate.

Lehi • Like a true center, Logan Sagapolu’s right hand is bloodied after a steamy early morning practice. And like a true offensive lineman, it takes him nearly 10 minutes to notice it.

Such things happen. But if you show up to Skyridge High, it’s easy to find No. 77, the 6-foot-4, 340-pounder who enters his senior year as one of the most highly regarded recruits in Utah.

These next few months, however, will be more intense than the last.

He’s ranked as the top offensive line recruit in the state by 247sports.com and has offers from several Pac-12 schools and high-profile programs around the country. Utah, Oregon, Washington, Washington State and Arizona have come calling. Ditto for BYU, Virginia and Nebraska. There will undoubtedly be more for the lineman who has started at every position on the offensive line his high school career, and recently transitioned to center.

“Center? Dang,” he said. “There’s so much pressure on your back. Last year I played left tackle and I didn’t have to worry about a snap. I could just get off the ball and do all that stuff. The center has to be the smartest one on the line. He has to make sure his snap is solid and then worry about his get-off, his hand placement and everything. Basically, if the center messes up the snap, it’s no one else’s fault — it’s your fault.”

Skyridge coach Jon Lehman said the move to center will bode well for Sagapolu. It’s where many programs envision him playing at the next level. The senior will also double on the defensive line in 2018 as a defensive tackle, because when you have a talent like Sagapolu, you take advantage of his rare abilities.

“He’s a load,” Lehman said. “We’ll move him around the lines a lot, for sure.”

Sagapolu has grown, Lehman added, in more ways than one.

Obviously his size stands out, but he’s worked to master the knowledge of the team’s schemes on both sides of the ball. That’s helped out his evolution, as he’s been asked to learn the ins-and-outs of as many as five positions on offense and defense. And as is the case with stars, you need them to help lead, too. Coaches only do so much.

“Really his demeanor and being willing to use his voice to affect people and push our team forward is a part of the maturation process,” Lehman said, “and that’s been a great thing to see from him.”

It can’t hurt when your team’s anchor can impress in more ways than one. In a video posted on his Twitter account earlier this year, Sagapolu is shown benching 500 pounds in the weight room.

“He’s just very strong,” Skyridge offensive line coach Bob Stephens said. “You look at him in the weight room and it’s pretty impressive. He’s pretty strong, yet he moves his feet very well. For a man of 340 pounds, he moves extremely well. Those are two great qualities. He’s a technician.”

What lies ahead is a final season in which his aim is to help guide the Falcons back to the Class 5A championship. Skyridge lost to Lehi in the state title game a year ago. “There’s nothing really else to think about,” Sagapolu said.

It will be challenging to ignore the outside noise, though. His plan is to announce his commitment at the 2019 Polynesian Bowl at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu in January, which means a little extra to Sagapolu, because his dad, Tavita, who coaches the defensive line and teaches at Skyridge, played at Hawaii.

“It’s really, really cool,” Logan said.

Right now, Sagapolu said he has two official visits lined up and planned: Utah and Oregon. He still has to map out when he’ll take the remaining three official visits, which he says he will do sometime in 2018. Like most sought-after recruits, he’s found the process to be a blessing, but also at times, a bit overwhelming.

“It used to be all the calls and all the texts, but I’ve kind of got used to it by now,” he said. “It’s had its moments. At times, it’s really fun and other times, it’s just really stressful. But I’m just really enjoying it.”

Lehman said Sagapolu has managed to put things into perspective ahead of his last year at Skyridge.

“If you’re going to be great, you’ve got to maneuver around distractions and focus on the task in front of you,” he said. “If you allow things to be distract you, whether it be the recruiting process or other outside influences, it will distract you from being great.”

“Sometimes it can be a little overwhelming, but Logan handles it very well,” added Stephens. “He’s always focused on what he’s doing at the time. I’ve been proud of him.”