FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - Defensive end Christian Tupou showed up at the Offense-Defense All-American Bowl to do one thing: represent Northern California.
The 6-foot-3, 260-pounder spent 12 hours traveling to get to the first practice on Sunday morning. Now, the Sacramento (Calif.) Grant defender is making a statement in practices with his big play in one-on-ones. This is exactly how he planned it and why he's still looking over a handful of recruiting options.
"It's smash mouth football in Northern Californai," Tupou said. "I'm just bringing it to Florida."
Tupou, who has collected scholarship offers from Arizona, BYU, Nebraska, Oregon State, Fresno State, and Nevada, says that recruiting right now is about to hit high gear. The nation's No. 53 defensive end is going to get buy on more official visits.
So far he's been to Arizona and Nebraska. California and BYU will be some time in January. He had a leader, but that shifted with a coaching change.
"Nebraska was my leader at one point, but when coach John Blake left, the list went back to even," Tupou said. "He was the main reason I wanted to go to Nebraska. Now I have to start over with my favorites."
The Huskers, along with Oregon State, Cal, and Fresno State make up his top group.
Aside from recruiting, what does Tupou want to accomplish at Thursday's All-American Bowl? That answer is a simple one.
"You're going to see the high level I play at," Tupou said. "I won't be hard to find."