football

Pac-12 leader for Villanueva

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Utah has emerged as the favorite for Fernando Villanueva mainly because the San Jose (Calif.) Independence offensive tackle has had such good conversations with Utes offensive line coach Tim Davis.
Nothing has been determined as far as a commitment but Villanueva, a 6-foot-6, 280-pound three-star prospect, said he's been impressed with what Utah can offer. Now he's trying to figure out when he can get there for an official visit.
"Right now my favorite one out of all my offers would be Utah," Villanueva said. "They're in the Pac-12 and they're not looking too bad. They look like they're going to be successful and they're short on offensive linemen and the coach wants me to fight for a position right off the bat.
"(Davis) says from the film I need a little more development but he said it's nothing the weight room can't fix.
"I had seen them one time when I was a junior but we didn't make much contact. Then they contacted me one time this summer probably eight or nine weeks ago. I told them they're one of my top schools and it would be great if they offered."
Utah, Washington State, San Jose State and Utah State have offered Villanueva, rated as the No. 89 prospect in the California state rankings by Rivals.com. He looked especially good at the Asante Trenchmen Academy this summer in Los Angeles.
The Utes are his favorite but Villanueva, who recently was contacted by Tennessee as well, said staying home and playing for San Jose State is also intriguing.
Coach Mike MacIntyre has been showing interest for a while and Villanueva said it's something he will strongly consider. The three-star said he'd like to take all of his visits in September and then make his decision.
"They're hometown right there," Villanueva said. "That's definitely important. They've been recruiting me hard. I guess they want me really bad.
"Coach MacIntyre has been really dead on every chance he gets he contacts me and sends me letters. Other than that there is Fresno and Washington State and then there's Utah State, too."
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