Offensive lineman Justin Polu visited his local college over the weekend, and the vibe he felt at UNLV under new football coach Tony Sanchez convinced him that was the place to be.
So Polu, who attends Silverado High School, committed to the Rebels, choosing them over fellow Mountain West member Colorado State.
“The tour was great,” Polu said Sunday. “I like the coaches’ passion — all of them — and the desire to win. It was a great weekend. They proved to me they wanted me, and I committed.”
Polu wasn’t the only one to say yes to the Rebels.
They also signed defensive end Mark Finau (6 feet 3 inches, 230 pounds) of Los Angeles Valley College, and received a commitment from running back Lexington Thomas (5-9, 180) of Houston’s Aldine Davis High. Also, offensive lineman Zack Singer (6-2, 295), who played high school ball at Bishop Gorman, has transferred from Kent State.
As for Polu (6-4, 300), he also visited Colorado State in December. He said he liked what he’s seen from UNLV’s Sanchez, who was hired last month.
“He got the job not that long ago, and the changes are happening like that,” Polu said. “Coach Sanchez has the program going in the right direction.”
Polu said offensive line coach John Garrison spoke to him about playing guard and tackle at UNLV. He was a guard at Silverado.
“It’s a new thing for me,” Polu said of tackle. “I’m ready for the challenge.”
Finau is the third junior college player to sign early for the Rebels, and doing so will allow him to go through spring practices. He played just one season at LA Valley, giving him four years to play three.
Thomas is the latest Houston product to commit to the Rebels. Wide receivers coach Cedric Cormier recruits that area for UNLV, and he has landed overlooked players such as running back Tim Cornett and wide receiver Devante Davis, who put together sensational careers at UNLV.
Singer signed last year with Kent State out of Gorman, and now he returns to play for his old high school coach. Singer must sit out next season because of NCAA transfer rules, and then he will have three years of eligibility.
Contact Mark Anderson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-387-2914. Follow him on Twitter: @markanderson65.