Arizona coach Rich Rodriguez has called the 2017 recruiting class potentially the “best ever” for the Wildcats. Coming off a rough 3-9 campaign, the Wildcats need all the help they can get. Star reporter Zack Rosenblatt is previewing Arizona’s recruits in the weeks leading up to the Feb. 1 national signing day. All ratings according to Scout.com.
First up: Defensive lineman Sione Taufahema.
Height: 6 foot 3 inches.
Weight: 320 pounds.
Hometown (high school/junior college): Mission Hills, California (Bishop Alemany/College of the Canyons).
Other offers: Hawaii, Northern Illinois, Massachusetts, Arkansas-Pine Bluff.
2016 stats: 24 tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss, 1 sack.
Who he is: An early enrollee and Arizona’s lone junior college recruit in the 2017 class.
Taufahema already signed his national letter of intent on the junior-college signing day.
How he fits: The Wildcats are desperate for size on the defensive line, and Taufahema instantly becomes the UA’s biggest player for that position group. He’ll compete for immediate playing time.
He said it: “I think I’m definitely prepared to come in and win a starting spot. Being a junior-college guy and going up against other Division I prospects is going to help me a lot just to come in and play right away. That was part of the pitch.” — Taufahema