The Scouting Guru has been all over the San Gabriel Valley and beyond, and like always, he’s offered to share his thoughts, free of charge. Don’t hate, enjoy it for what it’s worth, which is one man’s opinion on the talent in the San Gabriel Valley. Today he offers his post-season high school football thoughts, and the latest in the football recruiting wars.
As we get you ready for signing day on Wednesday, we felt that it was time to take a look at some of the schools that did well and other that didn’t do so well. We are taking our perspective based on the players from the SGV and the IE. So without further adieu, it’s time today to take a look at the Pac-10 schools. And we’ll start with the men of Troy…
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1. USC -- Yeah, I know that they only took one player from the IE. But what a player he is. Ray Lewis…oh I sorry I meant to say Vontaze Burfict is a man amongst boys. Right now, he is a USC commit, but Arizona State is making one last move on him. He is by far the best linebacker in Southern California and truly one of the top 10 linebackers in the United States. Quite a get for coach Carroll. As far as outside the area, well scout.com and rivals.com has them verbally getting 5 5-star players in the class, and ESPN has them getting 9 ESPN 150 players…so you do the math…it’s looks like another stellar class for the men of troy.
2. UCLA - (OK, I made Fred and Steve happy!). When we put together our final rankings for the class of 2009, which we will release on signing day, one school just jumped out at us…and it was UCLA. UCLA was able to get 5 of our top 10 ranked players based on senior film evaluation. They include #2 Richard Brehaut of Los Osos (QB), #3 Ricky Marvray of Corona Centennial (WR), #5 Marlon Pollard of SB Cajon (DB), #9 Sheldon Price of Bishop Amat (CB) and #10 Brandon Sermons of Diamond Ranch (DB). That gets them ahead of the conversation with the rest of the PAC-10 and, most importantly, gets them a little bit closer to USC. Not many recruiting services have Marvray ranked as high as we do. Then again, not many recruiting services saw Marvray play his senior season, like we did. This kid is going to a big impact for UCLA right from the start. But there is a downside to this class as well. It’s is still bewildering to us that UCLA took chances on Bloomington FB Jayson Allmond and Bishop Amat DE/OLB Isaiah Bowens. That tempers our enthusiasm just a little bit. But overall a great job done by coach Neuheisel.
3. Arizona State – One had to worry that losses to UNLV and Arizona would hurt the Sun Devils. That was not the case as they have but a nice finish to their recruiting class. They were able to snag two of our top-10 ranked players in Corona Centennial DE William Sutton (#4) and Upland CB Osahon Irabor (#8). Sutton made a huge rise on our rankings after watching senior film on him…and you would too if saw him in person or on film. One Pac-10 coach remarked to us that he thinks that Irabor has a true shot on playing on Sunday’s. That’s pretty high praise. Now, for a bit on the downside, they were able to get Citrus Hill DE Greg Smith (#31) and his senior film was just OK. As far as the national picture is concerned, they more than held their own in getting 1 5-star kid according to scout.com and 3 4-star players according to rivals.com. A solid job done by recruiting coordinator (and a good friend) Matt Lubick.
4. Oregon State - I really like the job that Mike Riley and his assistant coach who recruits the area for them (Joe Semalo) did this year. The shocker was that they got a commitment from the best lineman in the IE in Arroyo Valley’s Michael Phillipp (#7) after it was felt that Stanford was going to win out for him. He’ll play guard at the next level and will do just fine. It was interesting to note that only one school didn’t offer him…USC. But OSU took a player that made a bit of rise on our rankings in Corona Santiago FS Sean Martin (#13). He just moves like a FS and will have fun in OSU’s defensive schemes. And when looking outside the area, I think that got a true diamond in the rough in Crespi WR Kevin Cummings. He had a great game against Amat and I think many in the PAC just feel asleep on this kid. He’s going to be a good one. Now for the downside, OSU was able to get a commit from Colony DE Joshua Andrews…and let’s just say that we think it’s a real reach for the kid. All in all though, a nice class.
5. Arizona - Look out college coaches, we have a new sharp recruiter doing the area in Arizona LB coach Tim Kish and we think he did a great job in his first year of recruiting the area for the Wildcats. Arizona made Rancho Verde HS one of their stomping grounds and took three players. They include #12 Daniel Jenkins (RB), #16 Eric Martin (LB), and #18 Terrance Miller (WR). All three graded out very well with us and the one player that I think is going to make a impact is WR Miller. Great body, great hands and athletic. On a national scale, it looks like UA did just fine as they were able to get commits from 3 4-star players according to rivals.com. A very useful class for HC Mike Stoops.
6. Stanford - It was looking tragic for a little while for HC Jim Harbaugh, then came the news that they were able to get a commitment from Upland QB Josh Nunes (#5). That was a huge pick-up for the Cardinal and soften the blow a little after losing out on Arroyo Valley OL Phillipp. Other than that, it was a little quite on the IE /SGV area for Stanford, although they have offered a preferred walk on spot to Bishop Amat LB Brent Seals. On a national scale, the Cardinal was able to get a commitment from 2 ESPN150 players and one can say that they have a nice recruiting class.
7. Washington State – It’s tough to be going around the west coast and recruiting for the Cougs. But for 1st year HC Paul Wulff, this could be a recruiting class that can have an upside to it. The kid that we really like in the class is Corona Centennial RB Arthur Burns (#14). He shot up on our charts based on senior film and he’ll make a nice combo with St. Paul graduate Dwight Tardy. We also like Burbank Burroughs OL Sebastian Valenzuela, who everyone felt at the All-CIF meeting, was a first-team player. Were not as high on Riverside King OL William Prescott. Just don’t think he’s a tough player, period! But, the true test of there worth will be next year. Should be a real interesting year recruiting wise for the Cougs.
8. Washington - Steve Sarkisian is making headlines (in more ways than one) and his presence will be felt in the PAC-10 recruiting immediately. The player that we really like is Mt. SAC CB Dominique Gaisie. Now it helps when the new DB coach at UW was the DB coach last year at Mt. SAC in Demetrius Martin, but UW beat out BYU for his services. They get a kid that can flat out play. And look for him to be an immediate impact player on special teams. Not quite as high on Corona Santiago TE Marlion Barnett (#20) . We just didn’t think that he was fast enough to play an H-Back in the PAC. We’ll see if we are wrong. It looks like from a regional perspective that UW did just fine…I expect them to be a major player in recruiting in the next several years.
9. Oregon - From a national perspective, the Ducks did just fine. From a regional perspsective, that’s a whole different story. They did get a nice commitment from Chaparral offensive lineman Trevor Fox (#17) who has solid senior tape. But they lost out on recruiting battles to Irabor, Phillipp and Sermons. So in a sense, it was a tough year for the Ducks, but look for them to get back into the battle next year.
10. California – From a national perspective they did fine. From a regional perspective, I don’t remember a school that is as quiet as Cal. They have not taken any players from the area last year or this year. Will they start competing to get some of the top players in the IE or the SGV next season, time will tell. Like I’ve always said, they do things a little strange up in Berekley.