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Draft watch: Mike Iupati

Mike Iupati, G, Idaho

6-5, 325

Draft projection: Late first or early second round.

Iupati is the top-rated guard in the draft. He was born in American Somoa and his family moved to California when he was 14. There are 31 Somoan or Tongan players in the NFL, including Troy Polamalu, Junior Seau, Haloti Ngata, Lofa Tatupu and Rey Maualuga.

Said Iupati: "My family decided to decided they wanted us to have a good education. They sacrificed a lot of stuff to move from Samoa because we were very well off. Coming to the U.S. and realizing it's very difficult financially. We moved into my Auntie's house and stayed there for a whole year. Then my parents both had jobs and were able to support us financially so we moved to a small apartment in Anaheim and lived there paycheck to paycheck. It's been hard. That's why I always take advantage of every little opportunity I get, just try to seize the moment so I can have a better future for myself and my family."

---Mark Gaughan

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