WSU picked up the second verbal of its 2016 recruiting class when linebacker Jihad Woods of Helix (La Mesa, California) High School committed to play for Mike Leach and the Cougars. He announced his decision on Twitter.
Woods has not yet been evaluated by any of the major recruiting services (although Rivals has slapped the standard two-star tag on him), and WSU was his first and only offer -- one that came in about three weeks ago. According to Rivals, Washington, Boise State and San Jose State also were sniffing around.
Here's what our Brian Anderson had to say about Woods based on his highlights, which you can watch for yourself at the end of the post:
"He's listed at 4.76 but it looks like he plays much faster than that. Most of his highlights show him playing downhill; not a ton of his work in coverage was on there. He seeks out contact and goes 99 mph right through it -- really physical player. He makes great contact on the ball and drives, finishes every tackle, also shown forcing a few fumbles this way. He's scrappy in a gang tackle situation, and it's already second nature for him to rip at the ball. He's probably a little undersized to play in the middle but could be an aggressive OLB."
It's a little unusual for a kid to commit just a few weeks after receiving his first and only offer, and those kinds of commitments are the ones that sometimes don't stick. Just something to keep an eye on -- don't be stunned if he's looking around as more offers roll in.
And I'll just go ahead and say what Brian didn't: This kid will remind you a lot of Fotu Leiato. And the Cougs might be in a similar kind of battle once his recruiting heats up.
Woods joins three-star quarterback Ian Book out of El Dorado, California, in the 2016 class.