The Tennessee football program has a long history of producing some of the best defensive linemen in the history of the game. From Reggie White to John Henderson and Albert Haynesworth in recent years, the Volunteer program has always had a powerhouse defensive line. The Vols also have a long history of bringing in players from the state of California and have brought in a few from Grant Union High School in Sacramento, Ca.
About a decade ago, Onterrio Smith and Donte Stallworth were both recruited to Knoxville out of Sacramento and now the Vol staff is after another Grant star, this time it is a massive defensive tackle prospect from the California powerhouse. Viliami Moala has been a key cog for the Grant team since his sophomore year and the 2011 prospect still has another year to develop at the high school level before moving on to college.
Viliami dominated opponents last year on the way to the California state championship and now he has seen his stats dip a bit but that is only due to the constant double and triple teams he has been faced with.
“It can be frustrating because last year I was able to go one on one most of the time but now I have three guys on me almost every play. It can be tough but I guess it means they respect me so that means something for sure.”
Moala has strong ties to USC as he has had a couple of cousins play their college ball at Southern Cal and so he has always followed the program and has thoughts of playing for a program so rich in tradition.
“USC, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Texas, LSU, UCLA, Cal and many other big time schools are all over me right now and most of them have offered me scholarships. It is really early and I don’t know what to do yet. I have work to do on the field and in the classroom before I even think about choosing a college.”
Moala can clog the middle as well as any other high school defensive tackle in high school football and has the athleticism to chase guys out on the edges.
“I feel like I can do a little bit of everything and my size comes into play. At this level, they really can’t move me around too much in the trenches. I like mixing it up in there.”
Right now, Moala lists no favorites in his recruitment but it is pretty clear that USC is the leader of the pack based on his family ties and his familiarity with the program. There is however, plenty of time for others to make an impact on him.
“There are plenty of schools who have a shot at my services. I like the history that Tennessee has at the defensive tackle position and they are a winning program all around. I think I will definitely be looking at Lane Kiffin and his school a lot more as time goes on.”
Vol Nation will stay in touch with Viliami Moala as his recruitment continues.