Tustin (Calif.) running back Anthony Wilkerson picked up an offer from the Big 12 on Tuesday..…
Anthony Wilkerson, the 6-foot, 218-pound three-star running back from Tustin, Calif., had a stellar junior season finishing with 2,300 yards rushing and 35 touchdowns. "I think I've got a nice stiff arm," Wilkerson said. "I'm really hard to tackle. I think I'm violent on the field because I'm not gonna try to juke you. If I've got the ball and you're in my way I'll run over you." Wilkerson says he's also very involved in keeping his team hyped. "I try to keep everyone pumped," he said. "I like to energize my team." He says he can bench 325-pounds, squat 400 and has a 35-inch vertical jump. "I want to improve my hip fluidity so I can changed directions better," Wilkerson said. "I also want to get faster and get my 40-speed (claims a 4.5) down." Wilkerson, ranked as the No. 26 running back in the country by Scout.com, continues to deny a leader from among UCLA, Stanford, Utah and Washington, all of whom have offered. "I don't really have a favorite right now," Wilkerson said. "I'm trying to keep my mind open and not make any quick decisions. I plan on taking all five of my official visits before committing." The only two schools that he's already visited are UCLA and Stanford. "I used to watch UCLA a lot," he said. "I liked blue, so the color got me but it's not like I was every a really huge college football fan." The thing that stands out about the Bruins now is their coaches. "I really like coach Rick Neuheisel," Wilkerson said. "He's real down-to-earth and fun. He's just a cool guy." Wilkerson says he's also impressed with the talent that Neuheisel was able to bring to UCLA. "He's put together a really good coaching staff," he said. "He's also recruiting really well and they got some good guys this year. They are really working hard to get the Bruins back on top again." Stanford was the first to offer Wilkerson in February and he says the Cardinal are still recruiting him the hardest. "They've been on me since my freshman year," Wilkerson said. "I like them a lot. I like the weather there and the campus is beautiful. The scenery is great and I love the whole environment. "I also have a good connection with their running back coach (Willie Taggert)," he said. "We get along really well and he said that I'd fit into their schemes well. I felt comfortable with all the coaches at Stanford." Wilkerson's uncle is a Stanford grad and he admits that his parents favor the Cardinal. "They like Stanford because of their academics," he said. "But they said the decision will be mine." Although Wilkerson says he likely won't attend any camps this summer, he is planning on taking several unofficial visits. "I definitely want to visit everyone that offers me," he said. "I know I'll be going to check out Utah and Washington and I want to go visit Cal too." He says that the Bears are recruiting him and want to see some of his highlight tape. "I'm working on getting that together for them," he said. "Hopefully they'll offer." Wilkerson's most recent offer was from Utah and he admits the Utes successful 2008 campaign has piqued his interest. "They had a great season and went undefeated," he said. "They seem like a great team and they offered so I figured I should check them out." Another school that he's eager to visit is Washington. "(Defensive coordinator) Coach Nick Holt and (head) coach Steve Sarkisian are really cool," he said. "Coach Holt is always fired up and really funny. "Coach Sarkisian is more laid back and mellow," he said. "They are bringing in a great class and are just trying to get things going," he said. "They had a really bad season last year and they are really working really hard to make a difference. I think they'll be much better this year." Wilkerson says he's also being heavily recruited by Oregon, Arizona State and Duke. "They've all been in contact," he said. "They said they're gonna come down to my practice this spring. Those are definitely schools I'd be interested in too. "I just want to make sure I'm comfortable wherever I go and have a connection with the coaches," he said. "I also want to play in an offense that fits me and where I'll be able to get the ball and play." He says he's not concerned with distance. "Whether I stay close or go far away doesn't matter," Wilkerson said. "I just want to live in a nice place and somewhere that has good weather. I don't want it to get too harsh and cold or too hot. I guess I just want to be somewhere moderate." Wilkerson plans on majoring in either environmental science or sports medicine. He reports a 3.8 core GPA and a 1420 SAT.
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