Breaking down the top recruits from the state of Utah: No. 4, Logan Fano
It's no secret that over the past couple of seasons, the state of Utah has been turning out some of the top high school and college football players in the nation — headlined by Penei Sewell, the top offensive lineman in the country and a projected top-3 pick in the upcoming NFL draft.
But even with all of the talent in the state, the Utah football program has struggled to get those star players to wear Ute red and white.
Over the past five years, Utah has yet to sign the top prospect in the state despite being the only power-5 program in the state. In fact, since 2016 Utah has signed just 14 of the top 50 recruits from the state of Utah — likewise, hated rival BYU has signed 10 of those 50.
-- 2016 = Maxs Tupai (2), Leki Fotu (3) and Fua Pututau (7)
-- 2017 = Michael Richardson (10)
-- 2018 = Tennessee Pututau (6), Hunter Lotulelei (8), Jaren Kump (9)
-- 2019 = Simote Pepa (2), Junior Tafuna (7)
-- 2020 = Van Fillinger (2), Xavier Carlton (3), Nate Ritchie (4), Alex Harrison (5), Sione Fotu (8)
So far for the 2021 class, Utah isn't having near the success it did in 2020 as Viliami Pouha (7) and and Michael Mokofisi (10) are the only players currently committed to the Utes from the top-10. But Utah is still in the running for top recruit Kinglsey Suamataia, Logan Fano (4), Isaac Vaha (8) and Jeffrey Bassa (9) and could potentially flip Raider Damuni (5) from BYU.
In the 2021 class, Jackson Light (2) is committed to Oregon, who also happens to be favorite to land Suamataia, while Voi Tunuufi (3) and Branson Yager (6) are committed to Washington and Nebraska, respectively.
Now here's a breakdown of the Utes' top remaining recruits from the state of Utah...
*4-star, Defensive End
*Timpview HS — Spanish Fork, UT
Fano has been a fast rising prospect from the Mountain West, now ranking as the No. 4 prospect from the state of Utah behind offensive tackle Kinglsey Suamataia, one of the top prospects in the country.
Interestingly enough, Fano's tape really pops when he faces off with Suamataia and it's easy to see why he recently picked up that fourth star by 247sports. Fano has tremendous length already and is still growing, plus his frame looks as if he could easily add good weight.
He shocks with his athleticism as he has the ability to chase down running backs and quarterbacks from behind. He does have good bend for his size but will need to work on fighting off blocks a bit more when he gets to the collegiate level, which will come more naturally once he puts on the weight.
Altogether, Fano is a guy who just oozes potential as an outside linebacker or defensive end. He projects to be a multi-year starter and depending on his development, rice up NFL draft boards in four years.
His recruitment is technically open but most pundits are thinking it's coming down to a two-team race between Utah and Washington. Fano had previously committed to BYU before announcing his decommitment one week after he took a visit to the Utes...
One of Fano's closest friends and high school teammate Raider Damuni is currently committed to BYU — but there have been rumblings that he and Fano have talked about playing together, and in that regard Utah looks like the most logistical landing spot.
At defensive end, the Utes are very young with junior Mika Tafua expected to have a major breakout season after shining as a sophomore last year — he'll be starting alone with senior Maxs Tupai. While there's a chance they're both gone after this next season, the backups this year are expected to be redshirt freshman Miki Suguturaga and a pair of incoming 4-star freshman Xavier Carlton and Van Fillinger.
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