Mel Tucker is almost done with his staff. Three of the hires are from Georgia, one from North Carolina, one from Maryland, and he retained three from Colorado. That leaves two hires. Well, one hire now. Al Pupunu, the new tight end coach, is from Utah. And he brings a perfect mix of recruiting connections to this staff that’s relatively new to the area.
Pupunu is a Utah legend. He starred at Weber State as a tight end after an illustrious high school career. He went to the NFL and played for nine years, spending most of his time in San Diego with the Chargers. After that career, he went back to coach at Utah as a graduate assistant before moving to Southern Utah and Idaho, eventually landing back at Weber State.
Last year, at Weber State, he coached an All-American (FCS All-American, but still) and he had great success at Idaho as well. Pupunu also brings important recruiting connections to the Buffs. He has deep connections in Utah and with the Polynesian community (Pupunu is Tongan), as well as some connects in San Diego from his time in the NFL. He is established in the region. For all of the new faces that Mel Tucker has brought, it’s important to find guys like Pupunu that know the region and its coaches well.