Halalilo pulls the trigger

OL Tevita Halalilo

Moreno Valley (Calif.) Rancho Verde offensive lineman Tevita Halalilo nearly committed to UCLA back in March following an unofficial visit. Earlier this morning, the big lineman decided the time was now right.

Tevita Halalilo is one of the top offensive guard prospects in the region and is rated the No. 160 player in the nation. He's a mammoth lineman who weighed in at the NIKE Camp at 6-4.5, 340 pounds. He's easily among the most physical linemen in the nation and actually plays tackle for Rancho Verde but will move inside and play guard in college.

UCLA has been the top school for Halalilo for some time and on Friday, the athlete decided to pull the trigger.

"I called up Coach Klemm this morning and made it official," Halalilo said. "I've been wanting to commit for a long time but my dad wanted me to hold off to make sure I wasn't rushing in to anything. I knew it was the place for me and out of all the schools recruiting me, I have the best relationship with the UCLA coaches.

"Me and Coach Klemm are real close and I know he's going to make me a better player. I love the campus and the fact that the school is close to home is another huge plus. I want my family around me and they're all really excited for me. UCLA is a great academic school and the team is looking great right now. When you add all that up together, I knew I couldn't find a better school."

Halalilo said he and his father talked about making the decision Thursday night.

"We had a really good talk last night," Halalilo said. "My dad always liked UCLA too, he knows what a great school it is so I never had to convince him. I think he just wanted to make sure I was ready to shut down the process. We both decided the timing was right so I knew this morning, first thing I would make the call.

"I'm so relieved right now to have the decision out of the way. It wasn't really stressful for me but just knowing where I'm going for the next four years feels great. Now I can really focus on my senior year, my school work and my team at Rancho Verde. I honestly can't stop smiling right now I'm so excited, it's a great way to go in to the weekend."

Halalilo turned down offers from Arizona, Arizona State, Colorado, Miami, Oklahoma, Oregon State, Washington, Washington State and several others. He said he has no plans to take any other visits and is 100% solid in his commitment.

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