Giant 395 lb Australian lineman Daniel Faalele commits to University of Minnesota

Daniel Faalele who stands 6-foot-9, and weighs 395 pounds, has committed to play football for the University of Minnesota Golden Gophers.

Faalele (pronounced Fah-ah-LAY-lay) who has been turning heads since arriving last year, possesses a rare combination of power and speed. The 18 year old,  who wears size 18 shoes, is of Tongan and Samoan ethnicity and was born and raised in Melbourne, Australia. He only started playing football a year ago with IMG Academy. But he began receiving scholarship offers from Arkansas, Fresno State, Hawaii, LSU, Miami, Michigan and Oregon State even before he started high school.

The giant prospect was found by a University of Hawaii recruiter in a Melbourne gym and eventually attended one of Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh’s satellite camps in Australia.

His coach at IMG, Kevin Wright was more than impressed by his size:

“The only human I’ve ever met in person who was that size was Shaquille O’Neal. We have pro athletes on our campus. We have college athletes. But those guys aren’t imposing. He was so imposing where it just made all of us stop and look and say, ‘He really is that big.’ ”

Word spread quickly of Faalele’s size and raw ability, and the scholarship offers began pouring in.

Fellow Australian, Adam Gotsis, also from Melbourne, is now starting for the Denver Broncos at defensive end. Gotsis played for four years at Georgia Tech.



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