UNLV linebacker John Lotulelei (5’11”, 233 lbs) started four of his last five games in 2011 after transferring from junior college. By 2012, he was named First Team All-Conference.
With 181 tackles since 2011, the senior was projected to come off the board on Day 3 entering the NFL draft. Before he suits up with his new team, here’s a quick rundown of the 21-year-old ‘backer.
Full Name: John Taufa Lotulelei
Birthday: Dec. 4, 1991
Hometown: Kihei, Hawaii
High School: Baldwin HS
Major: Interdisciplinary Studies
From Baldwin High School, John Lotulelei matriculated to Merced College (California) for two seasons. He led his team with 84 tackles as a sophomore (12 for loss), prior to suiting up for the UNLV Rebels in 2011.
2011: 12 games, 4 starts, 60 total tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 0 forced fumbles
2012: 13 games, 13 starts, 120 total tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, 1 forced fumble
John Lotulelei leaped from a 33.3 percent start rate in 2011 to a 100 percent start rate in 2012 with UNLV. In turn, he doubled his total tackles and forced a fumble.
Weight: 233 pounds
Arm Length: 32 3/8”
Hand Size: 10 5/8”
40-yard dash: 4.84
Bench reps: 25
Broad jump: 117”
Vertical jump: 35.5”
Pro Day Results
40-yard dash: 4.65
Broad jump: 122”
Lotulelei added some speed to his 40-yard dash at his UNLV pro day, but his 10-yard split fell from 1.58 seconds to 1.61 seconds.
John Lotulelei’s only interception with UNLV came at the expense of Washington State rising junior Connor Halliday.
He was a team captain at UNLV and the Rebels’ first NFL combine participant since 2010. Despite starting just four games in 2011, he made it onto the Butkus Award (given to the nation’s best linebacker) watch list in 2012.
Fifty-one guys make the list. Lotulelei’s inclusion is not bad for a guy who wasn’t recruited in high school.
John Lotulelei is one pick away from being “Mr. Irrelevant” in NFL.com’s Josh Norris’ seven-round mock draft. He’s of no relation to standout Utah defensive lineman Star Lotulelei, who is projected at No. 4 overall in the same mock.
Lotulelei is already looking beyond his NFL playing career; he wants to be a coach when he’s done suiting up.
Follow Jamal Collier on Twitter @StatManJ.