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College football recruiting: Top prospects still in the hunt as Utah high school playoffs heat up

Corner Canyon’s Jaxson Dart (2) carries the ball for a first down during a high school football game at Lone Peak High School in Highland on Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020.
Corner Canyon’s Jaxson Dart (2) carries the ball for a first down during a high school football game at Lone Peak High School in Highland on Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020.
Yukai Peng, Deseret News

We’re now in the thick of the high school football playoffs in Utah, and perhaps it should come as little surprise that many of the teams still going have some of the top college prospects in the state.

Among the top 15 prospects in Utah according to 247 Sports, 11 of them are still playing as 32 teams vie for championships across five classifications.

Here’s a look at those 11 players, listed in order of their ranking by 247 Sports.

Kingsley Suamataia, Orem OL

★★★★ | Oregon commit

The top-rated player in the state and the No. 60 prospect in the entire country, Suamataia and the Orem Tigers beat Provo last week in the second round of the 5A playoffs and will face Skyline Friday in the quarterfinals.

Jackson Light, Corner Canyon OL

★★★★ | Oregon commit

Just behind Suamataia at No. 2 in the state of Utah is another Oregon-bound offensive lineman in Light (218th in the country overall). He helps lead a high-powered Corner Canyon Chargers squad that beat Westlake last week in the second round of the 6A playoffs and will face Bingham Friday in the quarterfinals.

Jaxson Dart, Corner Canyon QB

★★★★ | Uncommitted

One of the hottest prospects in the entire country (No. 299 overall), Dart has blown up this season, to use recruiting parlance, in calling the shots for the juggernaut Chargers. He has received a bunch of scholarship offers from Power Five programs this season, with the most recent he publicly announced coming from Washington State.

Voi Tunuufi, East DT

★★★ | Washington commit

A longtime pledge to the Huskies, Tunuufi will help lead the Leopards in the 6A quarterfinals Friday against American Fork after having a bye last week when Kearns was forced to forfeit because of COVID-19.

Logan Fano, Timpview DE (State ranking: 6)

★★★ | Uncommitted

Having long been on the college recruiting radar, Fano showed why last week in coming up with a huge pick-six in the T-Birds’ 5A second round win over Olympus. Timpview will face top-seeded Brighton Friday in the quarterfinals. Fano recently announced that the final four schools he’s considering are BYU, Utah, Washington and Oklahoma.

Raider Damuni, Timpview ATH (State ranking: 8)

★★★ | BYU commit

A longtime Cougars pledge, Damuni has gotten a number of Power Five offers but has maintained his commitment (his father Jack works in the BYU football program). He scored a touchdown in the T-Birds’ win last week.

Branson Yager, Grantsville OL (State ranking: 9)

★★★ | Nebraska commit

Largely an unknown on the recruiting trail until earlier this year, Yager blew up and ultimately committed to Nebraska in April. He’ll help lead Grantsville in the 3A semifinals against Morgan Friday.

Viliami Po’uha, Bingham DE (State ranking: 10)

★★★ | Utah commit

The son of former Ute and NFL veteran Sione Po’uha (who is now on the coaching staff), Viliami Po’uha had two sacks and two other tackles last week as Bingham snuck past Pleasant Grove on a last-second field goal.

Omarion Fa’amoe, West DE (State ranking: 12)

★★★ | Oregon State commit

A recent Beavers commit, Fa’amoe was credited with three tackles in the Leopards’ last-second win over Roy last week. West will face Lone Peak Friday in the 6A quarterfinals.

John Henry Daley, Lone Peak ATH (State ranking: 14)

★★★ | Uncommitted

Utah’s sack leader this season with 20.5 (the next closest player has 14), Daley had 4.5 of them last week against Pleasant Grove. According to 247 Sports, Stanford and Washington State are the two Power Five schools he has offers from, and he also has an offer from BYU, Colorado State, San Diego State and UNLV.

Coco Lukrich, Park City OL (State ranking: 15)

★★★ | Uncommitted

With Power Five offers from Stanford, Washington State and Boston College, along with service academies Air Force and Army, Lukrich will help lead the Miners in the 4A quarterfinals Friday against Ridgeline after they beat Ogden last week.

Note: The following prospects in the state’s top 15 have been eliminated from the playoffs:

No. 5 Isaac Vaha, Pleasant Grove TE (Utah commit)

No. 7 Jeffrey Bassa, Kearns S (Oregon commit)

No. 11 Michael Mokofisi, Woods Cross DT (Uncommitted)

No. 13 Tevita Mafileo, Jordan ATH (Uncommitted