• Michelle Bodkin @ 247sports.com

SENIOR FEATURE: Bradlee Anae Respects Utah's Process


When all is said and done Zack Moss may not be the only senior leaving a permanent mark in Utah’s record books in 2019. Defensive end Bradlee Anae is on pace to break the school sack record—one of the reasons he decided to return to the Utes for his senior year, despite a good opportunity to leave for the NFL after last season. It’s not lost on Anae that he and this team have the potential to do something memorable and he’s determined to do his part to make it happen. “I just wanted to do something special before I leave here with this team,” Anae said. “Maybe hit the career sack record here- I’ve got like 9 more to go. I’ve just got to stay consistent.” If the last name sounds familiar to you it may be because of a legacy his dad and uncle left at BYU 45 miles south of Salt Lake. Anae’s father played for the Cougars from 1979 to 1981 and was a two time All American. His uncle was the offensive coordinator at BYU through most of Bronco Mendenhall’s reign and is currently with Mendenhall at Virginia. Despite having a clear-cut path to BYU, Anae says he has always been the kid that has wanted to do his own thing, and so he did. “I was always the rebel child,” Anae said. “Everyone went to BYU and I wanted to try something new. Not only that, but the d-line tradition here was something I wanted to be a part of.” Anae was not the only child to break the blue bondage—his older sister Adora Anae was a star on the Utes women’s volleyball team from 2014 through 2017. “My second year here we lived together- we got a house- me, my cousin, Moroni, and another cousin so it was kind of just a family house,” Anae said. “It was fun. It was cool having my sister there. She was always there for me. I remember when I got pulled over and I didn’t have my I.D. and I had her go grab my I.D. for me. Having her there was something good.” The thought of being able to leave a legacy with his sister who earned first team All-American and was a three time All-Pac-12 honoree herself is an exciting possibility for Anae who noted it would validate all of the hard work they both have put in to their respective sports. “It’s just a blessing,” Anae said. “We came from humble beginnings and so to come here and do these things- we wanted to do something like that. We’ve been working our entire lives and she’s loving it out in Korea right now. It’s just our hard work manifesting.” Anae’s return to Utah for his senior year wasn’t just about records however. He also understands the importance of school and wanted to finish his degree in financial planning. He also felt like in the process of finishing school he could also perfect his craft and potentially increase his draft stock. Both were opportunities Anae didn’t feel like he could pass up on. “To finish school, honestly, and to get my draft stock up,” Anae said. “If I have one more year, one more shot to do so I might as well.” If Anae were home in Hawai’i he would most likely be at the beach surfing or diving off of cliffs, but being landlocked in Salt Lake doesn’t offer those opportunities when he has some spare time. “There are no cliffs here so I like hanging out with some of my friends,” Anae said. “I really don’t do much outside of football.” While most players tend to listen to music that gets their blood pumping for a game this is not the case for Anae who takes a much more cerebral approach to his game day ritual. “I like to listen to like classical music,” Anae said. “Mozart and Beethoven. It’s calming and helps me focus more. I think I would rather be more calm and focused than riled up before a game. It helps me better.” One of Anae’s favorite memories from his time at Utah was just hanging out with the guys at the pool—noting it was almost like what he would be doing back home. “We all went to the pool as a team and we were all doing summersaults and flips into the pool off of the diving board,” Anae said. “That was pretty fun. We were all over there jumping in the water.” Anae might be one of the prime examples of what “respect the process” actually looks like. It wasn’t always easy and it wasn’t always pretty. However, because of the dedication he put forth to getting better he is now starring down opportunities even he couldn’t have imagined and to him that is what being a Ute is all about. “What it means to be a Ute is first of all hard work, consistency, and respecting the process,” Anae said. “Not giving up or giving in. That’s what I’ve learned here. I think it’s a part of our program—especially respecting the process. That’s the biggest thing as far as being a Ute.”

SENIOR FEATURE: Bradlee Anae Respects Utah's Process

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