USU football: Senior linebacker Bojay Filimoeatu embracing leadership role thanks to upbringing

By Megan Allen

For the Deseret News

Published: Saturday, Sept. 29 2012 12:00 p.m. MDT

One of the draws of this matchup for Filimoeatu is going up against a lot of family and friends who will be playing on the Utes’ side of the line.

“Looking at Utah, I have a lot of friends who play there, most of my cousins and a lot of guys from my junior college days are there,” Filimoeatu said. “It’s going to be one of the great rivalry games I’ve played.”

Filimoeatu said one of the benefits to this game being played at Merlin Olsen Field at Romney Stadium is the local student and fan support.

“Our student section compared to theirs? There isn’t one,” Filimoeatu said. “Our student section is one of the best in the nation in my opinion.”

The Utah game is one of three this season that Filimoeatu sees as being a huge step in the preparation for the conference season, and with that, an advantage to getting closer to the team goal of winning the Western Athletic Conference title.

“We have three big games, but we look at it as an advantage to help us prepare for the conference season,” Filimoeatu said. “When we take on Utah, Wisconsin and BYU, we’ll be prepared. We’re pumped up for those games.”

As he heads into his final year at Utah State, Filimoeatu is grateful for the opportunity he has had to work with the players and coaching staff.

“I haven’t been coached at linebacker really well until now with coach (Spencer) Toone teaching me a lot of things,” Filimoeatu said. “I’ve already picked up more than last year. I know how to cover more and put more on the run.”

Following the completion of his interdisciplinary studies degree, Filimoeatu wants to have a career as a parole officer. However, like so many other players, he would love to be able to take his career a step further.

“Everybody’s dream is to make it to the big leagues,” Filimoeatu said. “Hopefully that works out for me, and it’s in God’s hands now.”

Regardless of what happens, Filimoeatu is looking ahead to a strong future. A lot of who he is today, he says he owes to his experience at Utah State.

“This right here, this University taught me how to be a man,” Filimoeatu said. “I give a lot of thanks to this University and coach (Gary) Andersen.”

Megan Allen works for Utah State University Athletic Media Relations.

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