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January 30, 2012Defensive lineman Tenny Palepoi broke out of obscurity earlier this month to land offers from BYU, Utah State, and Utah after spending the last two years toiling at Snow College. His latest written offer just arrived from Washington, and now only a couple days away from signing day, Palepoi faces the task of deciding his future in football.
The 6-foot-2, 291-pound defensive tackle originally played at Skyline High School in Salt Lake City, Utah. After grades forced him to find a junior college home for the next two years, Palepoi now finds himself with some legitimate options and must decide where best to take his talents.
Skyline is minutes away from the University of Utah, and Palepoi admits he grew up a fan of the local Pac-12 school.
"My older brothers were Utah fans," he said. "I just happened to follow them and I've always loved the U. Growing up and even in high school that's where I wanted to play, that's where I wanted to be."
Palepoi wrapped up his visit schedule this past weekend with an official to Utah. Before his Utah trip, Palepoi made official visits to Utah State and BYU.
About his final recruiting trip, Palepoi said "It was unreal. The atmosphere and everything about it compared to the other two. Each school has its benefits, but you can never go wrong with the Pac-12.
I met with all the coaches, sat down with coach Whit and hung out with him. Getting their perspective of being there was cool - I heard nothing but positive things."
The next step for Palepoi will involve sitting down as a family and deciding where he will fit in best for the final two years of his college career.
"I want to play against the best to see how good I am," said Palepoi.
"Playing against top notch competition every week is something I would really enjoy. The funny thing is my family is split in half with BYU and the [Utah]. That's how it's always been; half love BYU and half love the U. I've been hearing everything from them since this all started."
There's so much competition at the U, especially on the D line. That's where they always put guys into the NFL. With BYU, I feel like they have just as much talent on their line as well as Utah. It's kind of tough when I talk about Utah State, they have a lot of potential, and do I want to be a part of a Cinderella story? Or do I want be a part of a national program at Utah, or go to BYU?"
Everything should become clear Tuesday night.