In 2009, a player at Bingham High School won the Mr. Football award for the state of Utah. This is not very surprising considering the strength of Bingham’s program, but what was surprising was that it went to an offensive lineman, Tuni Kanuch.
He played both ways in high school, and wore down opponents with dominating physicality as each game wore on. BYU envisioned him as a defensive tackle eating up blocks and disrupting the opponents running game, but was switched back to the offensive line and now plays right guard. Offensive line is the opposite of every other position group in football, the more they are talked about during the game, the worse they are playing, and they do not talk about #78 very often during games. He has quietly become a durable piece of the line that might end up being a four year starter for the Cougars.
As a unit, the offensive line has improved significantly from last year, although they did look overwhelmed in pass blocking aginst Michigan. Right now Kanuch along with Tejan Koroma and Ului Lapuaho form a nucleus of sophomores that will continue to develop into a major strength for this team for two more seasons. Long term, it is hard to imagine a scenario where Tuni Kanuch does not end up in the NFL, if he decides to pursue that route. For now, his job is to blow up defensive lines for the Cougar running backs and make sure the analysts don’t find a reason to say his name.