Three-star offensive lineman Daniel Faalele has committed to play for head coach P.J. Fleck and the Minnesota Golden Gophers.
Faalele is teammates with quarterback Zack Annexstad and offensive lineman Curtis Dunlap (who also announced his commitment tonight) at the IMG Academy in Florida. Annexstad will enroll early at Minnesota as a preferred walk-on this spring and has been working to flip Dunlap to the Gophers. All three are on campus this weekend for an official visit with at least 30 other football recruits, including all but one commit from the Gophers’ current recruiting class.
Sports Illustrated published an article on Faalele back in May that is well worth a read. Originally from Australia, Faalele enrolled in the IMG Academy as a junior to learn the game of football. He spent his first season there strictly practicing and did not see game action.
Once he signs, Faalele will graduate in December and enroll at Minnesota in the spring.
Get to know Daniel Faalele
Power 5 Scholarship Offers: Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida State, Georgia, Illinois, LSU, Miami, Michigan, Missouri, Oregon State, Tennessee, UCLA, Utah, Virginia, and USC
247 Sports Composite Rating: .8858
Faalele is a bit of a risk, but the potential reward is well worth it. This season at IMG Academy was his first playing organized football. He has all of the physical tools to be a dominant left tackle, but he’ll need time and coaching to develop and master the nuances of the position. If he can learn to consistently keep his pad level low and leverage his upper body strength to neutralize pass rushers, he’ll be every Gopher quarterback’s best friend.
(Due to a technical issue, we aren’t able to embed Hudl videos in posts anymore, so the above link will have to suffice. I blame GoAUpher.)