Updated 3:26 p.m. with comments from Scout.com west coast analyst
We're combing the Internet for initial reaction to the Cougs' 2009 class, passing along all the stories we find. Be sure to click on the "continue reading" link for everything we find:
Cougfan.com says this class is a major departure from last year, when our main competition came from the Big Sky:
This year was an entirely different story. The Cougs beat out Oregon, Arizona and Washington for Bellevue’s Jamal Atofau, and LSU, Louisville and North Carolina State for JC All-American Brandon Rankin. They outdistanced Washington and Oregon State for Gino Simone. They edged Nebraska, Arizona and Oregon State for Anthony Carpenter, and Colorado for running back Carl Winston.
“This class stacks up very well with the others in the Pac-10, especially considering the season WSU just finished having,” says Scout.com’s West Coast recruiting analyst Brandon Huffman. “Players are seeing the opportunity to play early and make a big contribution and want to help build on that.”
The Spokesman-Review checks in with this story recapping the action, with special focus on why the Spokane kids thought coming to WSU was the right decision for them:
Wulff was able to reestablish WSU as a force in the state because, "when they were winning 10 games a season, they were getting the best kids out of Washington," according to Long, who will join Lewis and Clark defensive end Chris Mastin in Pullman next year. "They are just trying to get back to that."
Rivals site CougZone.com has its own recap story, but notes that according to them, there was one guy they had down for a commitment that got away:
Only one got away unexpectedly as receiver Joshua Bellamy, who had originally decided to attend WSU, switched his commitment to Iowa State where a Butte Community College teammate, safety David Sims enrolled.
Scout.com's West Coast recruiting analyst Brandon Huffman notes what allowed the Cougs to do so well in this player roundup at Cougfan.com:
“I think this is one of the strongest classes Washington State has gotten in a while, and they were able to get solid players at just about every spot. So many of the players committed before the season, too, really buying into Wulff and his vision for the WSU program. And even though the Cougs struggled on the field, he was able to keep those recruits in the mix, even with other schools calling, and then added some quality players.
“What I like about what Wulff did, which he did last year, is continue to go after players from the best programs, getting Gino Simone, who was a part of two state title teams at Skyline, Arthur Burns, who carried the load for California's state title squad, Jeff Tuel, who in one year as a starter won a section title, and Bellevue’s Jamal Atofau, who also won a state title this year.
That's all for now.