WSU is three weeks and a day away from inking its 2014 recruiting class. Coaches have been off, but the recruiting dead period comes to an end on Wednesday, so expect that to change. And quickly.
The Cougars are still in on a number of players while also attempting to secure a pair of former commitments. Even in the dead period, there has been a recent whirlwind of reported offers, visits, cancelled visits and more. We'll try to run it all down to get you caught up on everything you need to know. No better place to start than with the pair of 4-star former commits who are looking around.
WSU is still in the mix for the 4-star defensive tackle from Bellevue, but it will face stiff competition. Griffin has been interested in Cal for a while and will take an official visit to Berkeley this weekend. The Bears made some defensive staff changes recently, including firing defensive tackles coach Barry Sacks. (Could a man named Barry Sacks be put on Earth to do anything other than coach defensive line? I think not.) We'll have to wait and see how that impacts things with Griffin, but he took notice:
Griffin recently landed an offer from Mississippi State and will visit the Bulldogs on Jan. 31. He sounds excited about the possibility of playing in the SEC.
"That's a huge thing," Griffin said via Rivals.com ($). "I could go play football in the best conference in the country. It's pretty cool."
As you know, Chandler Leniu decommitted from WSU on Monday. The 4-star linebacker from Southern California cited location as a factor and things don't sound great for the Cougars, even if Leniu's dad said WSU is still in the top three.
"I kind of am leaning toward staying closer to home right now," Leniu said, via Adam Gorney and Rivals.com ($).
Leniu will take a trip to Cal on Jan. 24 before heading to Fresno State on Jan. 31. He said he wants to see if Cal is the right fit and will be looking at the little things as he's "not sure if that's the place for me yet." From all indications, Leniu would like to play closer to home and if Cal doesn't disappoint, it wouldn't be a surprise to see him flip.
WSU in the running for Austin Maloata?
Three-star defensive end Austin Maloata has been committed to USC since May, but that may change soon. USC made a coaching change during that span and apparently Steve Sarkisian and company haven't reached out yet.
"I haven't talked to any USC coaches in about a month," Maloata said, via Keenan Bowen of Coug247. "Right now I am focused on Arizona State and Washington State but I would still say I am committed to USC until further notice."
Reading between the lines, Maloata will remain committed to USC if the Trojans remain committed to him. If not, it might come down to WSU and ASU. Maloata visited WSU in November and said he "loved" the environment. Joe Salave'a is the point man here for WSU, so if Maloata does open things up, the Cougars' chances will be in good hands. Maloata said he will make a final decision on signing day.
Keith Harrington goes bananas in all-star game
We haven't talked a lot about Keith Harrington since he committed in late May, but he's doing everything he can to change that. Harrington took home MVP honors in the Blue-Gray All-American bowl, racking up more than 300 total yards. That is not a typo:
Harrington played running back in high school and in the game, but could land at inside receiver in Pullman. You can watch the entire game here. Pro tip: if you don't want to watch the entire game, scroll through the diamonds to find Harrington highlights, like this one.
The huge game could attract some additional recruiting attention, but Harrington remains solid with WSU and will visit this weekend.
Northeast RB @keithy_rice21 says he's still solid on Wash. St. after being MVP of Blue/Gray game. In fact, he visits Pullman this weekend.— Rodney Page (@RodneyHomeTeam) January 13, 2014
- Oklahoma high school running back Michael Warren was planning to visit WSU, but that trip has been cancelled according to Keenan Bowen.
- Running back Cory Young was also planning a visit, but committed to Boise State and will no longer take the trip to Pullman, according to Bowen once again.
- The Cougars remain in the running for 4-star offensive tackle Kaleb McGary. The Tacoma product said WSU, Washington, Oregon State and Wisconsin are his final four. He will take a trip to Wisconsin this week and take an official to Washington before signing day, according to Rivals.com.