When Word of Life Academy in Honolulu closed last June, Bryson Mook faced an uncertain future in football.
But Mook found a home at Bishop Gorman the next season. And recently, he found a new home in Flagstaff, Ariz.
Mook, a senior defensive end, accepted a scholarship offer with an oral commitment to Northern Arizona on Thursday.
“It’s a true blessing,” said Mook’s father, Ray. “Bryson had to come in (to Gorman) and compete. He had to come in and battle. Coach (Tony) Sanchez gave him a chance, and the rest is history.”
Bryson Mook picked the Lumberjacks over a scholarship offer from Texas-El Paso. The 6-foot-2-inch, 245-pound pass rusher came away impressed after his official visit to Northern Arizona last weekend.
“We thought Flagstaff was the best place to be,” Bryson Mook said. “It was all about the community. I went there, and it was like back home (in Hawaii).”
Bryson Mook will play on the same defensive line with former Gorman defensive tackle Tim Wilkinson, who made 16 tackles and two sacks as a freshman last season.
Wilkinson helped Northern Arizona finish 6-5 in 2010, narrowly missing the Football Championship Subdivision playoffs.
“It’s a good up-and-coming program,” Bryson Mook said. “I’m looking forward to it.”
Mook missed most of his senior season with a leg injury, but returned in time for the playoffs to make a positive impact. He finished with 12 tackles to help Gorman (13-2) repeat as Class 4A state champions.
Bryson Mook is the fifth Gorman senior to commit heading into the Feb. 2 signing day. He joined defensive end Jalen Grimble (Southern California), center A.C. Patterson (UTEP), cornerback Togasii Peko (Navy) and safety Evan Zeger (Washington).