Report: Washington Tries Double Play to Keep Tuimoloau in Town

Dan Raley

It appears all efforts are being made to keep J.T. Tuimoloau from leaving town to play on the college scene.

The coveted Eastside Catholic High School athlete not only has the University of Washington football team pursuing him as a defensive end, the Husky basketball team now wants him as a small forward, according to 247Sports.

The site is reporting that Tuimoloau now has scholarship offers from both UW sports, with the basketball option presented on Tuesday.

While considered the nation's top defensive recruit for 2021, the 6-foot-5, 277-pounder would appear to be a much more modest, if not undersized, basketball player.

The Huskies, however, have a history of trying to make it work with two-sport athletes, most notable with Nate Robinson, a cornerback and a shooting guard at the UW. Others who have tried to compete in both sports were future NFL players Austin Seferian-Jenkins and the late Reggie Rogers, plus Charles Frederick and John Meyers.

 Tuimoloau still remains uncommitted but has football offers from Alabama, Ohio State, Stanford, USC and, of course, Washington.

"We kind of assumed why a lot of people weren't offering or didn't want to offer because they only have so many offers they can give out and they thought I was only a football guy," Tuimoloau told 247Sports. "But this was always a goal, to get offered for basketball."

One has to wonder if the UW football and basketball coaches met in a room and mapped out the best way to keep Tuimoloau from leaving town. 

While Tuimoloau is not one of them, there has been a rush of commitments because of the ongoing pandemic. Sports Illustrated's Pat Forde takes a look at this. 

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