The Arizona Wildcats were successful in landing the top-ranked 2016 recruit in the state of Hawaii, Michael Eletise, and have tapped into the pipeline of highly-touted recruits from The Aloha State. Isaac Slade-Matautia is currently the second-ranked player in the state of Hawaii, ranked 18th among all outside linebackers and 255th regardless of position.
The 6-foot-1, 225 pound linebacker holds offers to Arizona State, Nebraska and Washington, among others, and is also hearing from schools including Michigan and Utah. Arizona was one of his first offers back in June.
"I got in touch with the staff maybe a year ago then I just recently went to see them on my unofficial visit and it went great," Slade-Matautia said about his visit last month."I got to meet the coaches and see what the school was like, the whole atmosphere around Arizona."
"It went pretty well, better than I thought," he continued. "It was my first time in Arizona and it was a great experience. I could see how each coach taught the players, how practice went, the drills they did and overall how the relationship between the players and coaches were."
Arizona also has a nice recruiting tool in Eletise, who will be joining the team this summer. Isaac and Michael go way back, and the two families have a strong bond.
"I actually train with him every day," Slade-Matautia said about his ties with Eletise. "I played with him since freshman year so we're close with his family. Him and his dad are very strong about making me commit to Arizona knowing that I have the offer. They have a huge effect on my decision. And it actually kinda helps that maybe if I do go there I can have people I already know there."
In the last recruiting class, we saw Charlie Ragle take the lead recruiting role for Eletise. While being recruited, Eletise told me that Ragle was the most inspirational and motivational coach he had been around. Ragle has taken the lead role for Slade-Matautia as well.
"I talk to Coach Ragle a lot, I talked to Coach (Marcel) Yates on my visit," Slade-Matautia explained. "They told me how I would fit in, what position I would play and what type of formation I'll probably have to come in and out of. Just watching film, (Yates) told me exactly what kind of personnel he has and how he could develop me as a player if I come to Arizona."
The Wildcats figure to be in decent shape to land the 4-star outside linebacker, as he has them high on his list.
"As of right now I'd have to say top three. Anything can change but as of right now it would probably be top three."
When it comes to deciding on his future school, academics will come first. He plans to major somewhere in business or biology, one of the two. He is also looking closely at the coaches and their relationship with the players. But don't expect a commitment anytime soon. He's going to be taking his time throughout his process, taking in as much information as possible to make the best decision.
His junior year highlights at St Louis School are below.