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May 21, 2013

Rookie Lotulelei all grown up from high school days

At his introductory press conference at Bank of America Stadium last month, Star Lotulelei sat at the dais as a poised, humble, mature and (very) large man.

Both head coach Ron Rivera and general manager Dave Gettleman extolled the virtues of not only getting a quality defensive tackle with the 14th overall pick, but also getting a mature 23-year-old who wouldn't succumb to the normal pitfalls that NFL rookies do.

But the same Lotulelei that will take the field today on the first day of organized team activities is not the same one from Utah's Bingham High School, according to this account from the Salt Lake Tribune.

In a column by Kurt Kragthrope, Lotulelei was described by high school coach as being a "lazy student" at one point in high school. The school also instituted what's known as the "Star Rule," raising the minimum GPA needed to play football from 2.0 to 2.5 after he didn't make the cut for BYU.

We've documented Lotulelei's rise from a furniture mover to line mover at Utah in our paper before, but it's always interesting to get a different perspective from those who knew and covered him back then.

--Jonathan Jones

Posted by Observer Sports on May 21, 2013 at 09:44 AM | Permalink

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