Photo by Twitter / Ari Patu
Cal Football

Patu Talks Cal BBQ, Recruiting

July 31, 2019

6-4/185 Folsom High School quarterback Ari Patu was one of several talented 2021 recruits on campus for Cal’s recruiting barbeque on Saturday and was a fan of the experience.

“I thought the visit and barbecue were great and well-run,” said Patu. “My family and I had a great time and the atmosphere was very warm and welcoming.

“The barbecue was everything I expected it to be. I had an awesome time getting to talk to the coaches in a laid back environment, as well as sit down and meet other recruits. The food was also great (shoutout to Benji!).

Patu is the son of former Justin Wilcox’s Oregon teammate Saul Patu and the younger brother of Cal frosh outside linebacker Orin Patu, who committed to Cal in 2018 and graduated Seattle’s Rainier Beach High School early to enroll at Cal and participate in spring practice.

So far, Patu’s older brother has had a positive experience at Cal and has had success in the strength and conditioning program, adding 20 pounds to his 200 pound frame to check in at 220 heading into fall camp.

“Orin has loved his experience as a player, and he’s getting more and more excited as the season approaches,” noted Patu.

“As a student he has had to adjust to the college lifestyle just like anyone would, but he’s noted that the support system the student-athletes have makes the transition much easier and improves their likelihood to excel in the classroom.”

Thought it’s early in the process, with Patu just halfway through his prep career heading into his junior year at Folsom, he’s developed a strong relationship with Cal staff so far.

“My experience with the staff has been great, all the way from when my brother was being recruited up until now,” said Patu. “Coach Wilcox is a high-character person, and it shows in how he runs his team and who he hires on his coaching staff.

“I’m mainly talking to Coach Baldwin in my recruitiment so far.”

What’s the versatile athlete looking for in a program?

“First and foremost, I’m looking for a place that will challenge me, both mentally and physically, to be the best person and player I can be. Team culture is also really big for me. How a team functions, their energy going into a tough workout, as well as their mindset and their goals as a collective unit. Having authentic and inspiring leadership, as well as a great connection/relationship with my head coach and position coach, is important as well.

“Last but not least I’m looking for somewhere that will prepare me for life beyond football.”

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