The quarterback class in the West in 2008 may not have the star power that
previous classes have had, but the depth is there this year, unlike in years
Still, the quarterback "arms race" has been slow, with only one quarterback
prospect in the region having made a decision when May rolled around.
Dayne Crist, from Notre Dame HS in Sherman Oaks chose the University of Notre
Dame, leaving all the Western schools available, despite having offers from
several of them.
Over the weekend, though, UCLA became the first
Pac-10 school to get a commitment from a quarterback when they received a verbal
from Nick Crissman out of Edison HS in Huntington Beach.
“I was talking to Coach (Karl) Dorrell on the phone
and he offered me and I decided to commit right there on the phone,” said
Crissman. “They were my number one school after getting to know Coach Dorrell
and Coach (Jay) Norvell. I really felt we built a great relationship and I have
always been a fan of the school.”
Last year, Crissman led the Chargers to the CIF Pac-5
finals, where they lost to Orange Lutheran. He threw for 3,094 yards and 27
touchdowns (232-for-368), leading Edison to an 11-3 record.
Bellevue (Wash.) offensive lineman David DeCastro is
one of the most heavily pursued offensive linemen in the Northwest, and he is
holding offers from Washington, Washington State, Stanford, Boise State, Arizona
and Oregon State.
"It's great to get all of those offers this early and have those options, but
I'm not in a hurry," DeCastro told
Dawgman.com. "That doesn't mean I might not make an early
decision, but I think I'll probably end up taking all my visits to check out the
schools and see what each has to offer."
DeCastro is one of Washington's top targets and he took
in the Huskies' Spring Game, getting a chance to visit with head coach Tyrone
"It was a lot of fun. It was really good because I got to meet with coach (Tyrone)
Willingham and he got to meet my mom for the first time because she hadn't been
able to talk with him before. We talked about football and what he likes and expects out of his players. He
also talked about where the program is going and that they really are focusing
on the in-state guys this year and that they like what I bring to the table."
One of the fastest rising prospects in the West is Merced (Calif.) receiver
Jarrett Sparks. The top offensive player in Central California, Sparks
picked up his fifth offer earlier this week, and his fifth from the Pac-10 at
that, when Arizona State offered him.
Sparks has also been offered by Cal, Washington State, Arizona and Oregon
State and this week also saw USC head coach Pete Carroll come by the campus to
take a look at him.
Sparks had 862 yards receiving and eight touchdowns as a junior and was also
an all-state basketball pick
The quarterback class of 2009 may be the best the state of California has
seen in years. Several top college prospects are already being identified
in that class and so far, two signal-callers have picked up offers 21 months
before they can sign anywhere.
Matt Barkley, out of quarterback factory Mater Dei of Santa Ana, has three
offers, Colorado being the first, Florida State being the second and Stanford
the most recent school to offer him.
"(Coach) Harbaugh came to Mater Dei , watched the practice and then offered
Matt," said his father Les.
The Cardinal also offered 2009 prospect Tate Forcier out of Scripps Ranch in San Diego.
The youngest of three quarterback playing brothers, Forcier's offer from the
Cardinal was his first and then Arizona followed suit days later.
"Coach (Jim) Harbaugh came by the school and I wasn't there. My dad told me
to call him. I called him and he said he was giving me a scholarship to
Forcier's older brother Jason just transferred to Stanford from Michigan and
his other brother, Chris, signed with UCLA in February. Tate was named the
top quarterback at the Los Angeles Scout.com Combine last month, impressive for
a sophomore, and is considered the best of the Forcier's.
Van Nuys (Calif.) Birmingham tight
end Mychal Rivera (6-4, 228) told us a month ago that he was hoping to get an
offer from Oregon and earlier this week, he got that offer.
"Coach Greatwood told me they were offering me a scholarship to the University
of Oregon," said Rivera. "I couldn't believe it. That was the one school I
wanted an offer from."
The offer for Rivera was his second, Nevada being the first, but he made no
bones about the Ducks being the favorite.
"I'm planning on going up there in a couple of weeks and if I like the feel,
I'll commit," said Rivera.
One of the top tight ends in California, Rivera had 21 catches for 203 yards
while spending much of the year opening holes for running back Milton Knox.
Arizona is quick becoming a hotbed for recruits, and
the running back class in the Cactus State is one of the best at the top the
state has seen in years.
Covaughn Deboskie and Jamal Womble get much of the
attention but Phoenix (Ariz.) Brophy Prep running back Ray Polk is getting
plenty of interest from colleges and he already has scholarship offers from the
two in-state programs, Arizona and Arizona State as well as Nevada, Nebraska,
Oregon State, Colorado, San Diego State and Oklahoma State.
“Initially I am looking at the programs, the staffs
and education," Polk told Scout.com. "But ultimately the main thing with me is
how I fit in. How do these schools fit me?”
Michigan and UCLA also like him and have been keeping a close eye on Polk.
Snow (Utah) College has been a good feeder JC to BYU and the Cougars again
reaped the benefits of that relationship when they picked up a verbal commitment
early this week from defensive tackle Tevita Hola.
“I was going to either call them last Saturday or
today to let them know that I was going to commit,” Hola told
TotalBlueSports.com. “I just decided to give [Mendenhall] a call today to let
him know, and luckily he was still at the airport and here in Utah. We basically
just talked about what he expected of me and what he wanted me to prepare for as
I go throughout the season. He said he was basically looking forward to seeing
me up there after this year."
One of the best defensive tackles in the JC ranks
this year, Hola initially committed to Southern Utah University, but decided to
take his two-year LDS mission. Upon his return, he enrolled at Snow and will
play the 2007 season there.