NUMBER 10: PEIZGE MAILEI – HIGHLAND
Mailei is one of the most underrated talents in the state. He recently made the transfer from Highland to Alta and will make an immediate impact. He has already received plenty of D1 offers, including one from the University of Southern Florida. Mailei is the definition of an athlete. He was also the signal caller for the Rams last season and fueled their offense. Defensively, he flies around the field and brings the boom whenever he gets around the ball. The Hawks will be excellent next season, and a generational player like Mailei could be what puts them over the edge, perhaps making them a title favorite in 5A.
NUMBER 9: SIFA KOLOMALU – SPRINGVILLE
Kolomalu is the third Red Devil on the defensive end of the ball to land in the top ten of our lists. Springville’s defense might be the best in the state, and either they or South Summit will lead the state in sacks. Kolomalu is an absolute unit. He is a towering 6’4, which allows him to see over the line and gives him excellent leverage when rushing the passer. January was a big month for Kolomalu, who received three D1 offers, which included Utah State and BYU. BYU has already recruited a handful of Red Devils, so I would imagine they would be at the top of his list. Watch out for the Red Devils this next season.
NUMBER 8: ADNEY REID – SPANISH FORK
Spanish Fork has hidden gems that shouldn’t be so hidden. Players like Reid are significant prospects who will be playing at a high level at a D1 school. Last month, Reid made the decision to fully commit to the Cougars and play ball. Reid is a great competitor, which is all a coach is looking for in a linebacker. He has an immaculate football IQ and has the build to really pop when he makes tackles. Spanish Fork is looking to be a real dark horse next season that could make a run at the title.
NUMBER 7: CYRUS POLU – DESERT HILLS
Polu is that dude. He was a big reason why the Thunder were able to win the 4A title last season. His development from the start of the season to the end was fun to watch. He developed into a star in front of our eyes. Polu is only going to be a junior, and he already has a handful of offers. Both Arizona and Arizona State are interested in Polu, as are some of the in-state schools. He is built like a truck at 6’2 and 205 and can absolutely fly for his size. If he gets his mitts on the ball, he has a chance to take it for six, wherever he is located on the field. I don’t think Polu has even come close to what he is capable of yet. Watch out for the Polu and Desert Hills next season.
NUMBER 6: CASH HENDERSON – WOODS CROSS
This is not the first time Henderson has been on our LB list. He has been dominating at the linebacker position for multiple seasons now. He is the heart of the Woods Cross team and is only getting better. He has a motor that never seems to stop. When Henderson gets his hands on you, you are going to the turf. He simply does not miss. Henderson can get it done on the other side of the ball as well. He is a bruising runner with next-level speed. Henderson had over 100 tackles last season and can help the Wildcats get over the hump next season.
NUMBER 5: BUBBA KOFORD – FREMONT
Koford is not a name you see on a lot of recruiting lists. He does not have offers pouring in, but he absolutely should. He is a blue-collar player who puts in the work day in and day out. He does all of the little things on the field that pay major dividends. He is not afraid to sacrifice his body for his teammates. Koford is the kind of player that coaches love to have on their teams. He is a great locker room guy who should be taken more seriously by scouts. I have a feeling he will have a breakout season that will erase any doubt that he is a D1 talent.
NUMBER 4: MASON JEPPSEN – BOX ELDER
Much like Koford, Jeppsen is a tough and gritty linebacker. He never quits on the play and seems to be involved in every tackle made. He is very high on our list because he plays the right way, and if he played for a team that gets more attention, he would be one of the best prospects in the state. Jeppsen led the 5A classification in tackles and helped the Bees nearly upset the legendary Lehi team. He will be looking to snag the tackle title next season and hopefully take Box Elder to the next level, maybe even the championship game.
NUMBER 3: BLAKE TABARACCI – PARK CITY
The Tabaracci name is a familiar one in Park City. Blake lives up to it well. He is the definition of a college level football player. He has offers from what seems like every PAC-12 school. From Colorado to UCLA. Tabaracci is a multi-tooled linebacker who doesn’t seem to have a weakness. He can make tackles in the open field, rush the passer, and even drop back in coverage. He is an other-worldly talent who will captain a stout Miner defense next season. Park City is dropping to 4A next season and is looking to win the title in their first year back.
NUMBER 2: BO TATE – CORNER CANYON
An already star-studded Corner Canyon team landed one of the best linebackers in the state in Bo Tate. His stock rose more than any other player’s last season, he went from a great player to one of the best prospects in the state. Tate is a phenomenal athlete who makes a difference on the offensive side of the ball as well. He runs the ball with purpose and can make people miss in the open field. Tate has had offers from some powerhouse programs like Baylor and Oklahoma State. Who knows who will be blowing up his phone after the season’s end?
NUMBER 1: EASTON BAKER – STANSBURY
At the number one spot comes Stansbury standout Easton Baker. Baker made people notice his talent early. As an underclassman, he was committed to BYU and was sought after by many other schools. He recently decommitted from BYU and is getting calls from the likes of Notre Dame and Oklahoma. Baker is a violent defender who not only looks to make the tackle but also a game-altering turnover. When Baker is around the ball, something exciting is bound to happen. Baker will be used in more of a hybrid role next season; you never know where he will line up. I am looking forward to watching the Stallions this next season.