After experiencing a slight recruiting lull, the product of Jake Heaps' commitment to BYU, Washington football experienced a firestorm on the recruiting trail this week following the verbal of Nick Montana. The Huskies picked up three top recruits, all mentioning Montana's commitment figured prominently in their respective decisions.
TE Michael Hartvigson from Bothell is a great looking kid cut from the mold which produced a string of All American Tight Ends, stretching from the mid-1960's to the early 2000's. While not owning the "Wow!" pass-catching athleticism of a Kavario Middleton, Hartvigson has the body-type to produce key blocks the offensive unit has been missing in recent years. The kid is an excellent athlete who I'm very excited to watch.
WR/DB Keanon Lowe, arguably one of the top two or three athletes in the state of Oregon, is the type of athlete Washington once annually stole from the state to the south. Take a moment to view his highlight film; you simply come away impressed with his ability to play on either side of the ball.
Husky legacy OT Colin Porter seemed destined for WSU as recently as last month, as he was attracted to the Agriculture program in Pullman and the small town feel. Former Husky Head Coach Keith Gilbertson, a friend of Porter's father, has been advising and tutoring the younger Porter this past spring. Make no mistake: Porter is an excellent get; while his excellent size is an advantage, he most importantly possesses very quick feet.
C Mike Marboe of Wenatchee and DE Happy Iona (Spanaway) appear to be the only local kids left on the recruiting board; neither, however, has an offer as yet. Marboe's preference is to play at UW, but the coaches want to see him in camp later this month for a closer evaluation, or even wait until the fall to view his performance in live action.
Iona is making excellent strides the classroom with the goal of raising his grades and test scores to a level qualifying him for Division One school. Iona had to learn English from scratch after moving to the US as a child, thus has set him back in his studies. It is believed by many that Iona may have greater upside than Bellevue DL Julious Moore, who committed to UCLA earlier this month.
Washington is in contention for some big-time recruits from California, one of whom visited campus last weekend: OT Erik Koehler from Oaks Christian. Most "experts" believed Koehler was a heavy UCLA lean before the Montana verbal. Nick and Erik are very close; expect UW to get heavy consideration from one of the top offensive linemen in the country. Koehler knows he can start four years at UW, a big factor in his decision-making.
TB Jordan James from Corona, California is a player Sarkisian covets. James would be a great compliment to the banger they signed earlier this spring at RB. James will visit Florida, Notre Dame, UCLA, and Arizona. His fifth visit is up in the air between Tennessee and Washington. Once again, it appears Sark and Tennessee Head Coach Lane Kiffin are going head to head on a top California prospect.
Scout five star prospect TB Malcolm Jones from Oaks Christian is probably the top RB in the West this year. Though he doesn't list UW in his top eight, this could feasibly change with the verbal of Nick Montana. At 6'0", 215 lbs., Jones has the type of size and speed every football coach--and fan--loves. Currently LSU, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, USC, and UCLA are his leaders. Expect Nick Montana to try to talk him into taking a visit to Washington to check things out.