By Aram Tolegian
Several of the area’s top football recruits have turned their attention on securing a place to play next season. West Covina’s Chris Solomon, the Tribune’s Player of the Year in 2010, has offers from Colorado, Arizona State, Arizona, Nevada and possibly Oregon State. Bulldogs head coach Mike Maggiore also believes UCLA and Washington are close to making offers.
Maggiore said Solomon will take his recruiting visits in the coming weeks.
West Covina has several other players whose stock is on the rise. Defensive end Justen Meaders has no official offers yet, but Maggiore said Montana is very interested along with Eastern Washington and San Jose State.
Linebacker Dorrin Turner broke the Bulldogs’ record for tackles in a season and, along with running back Jimmy Frazier, is catching the eyes of recruiters.
Turner has interest from Portland State, Sacramento State and UC Davis. Frazier is drawing looks from Stonybrook, New Mexico State and Eastern Washington.
"He wasn't on the radar at the beginning of the season, but he's got a tremendous highlight film now," Maggiore said of Frazier, who averaged 14 yards per carry this season.
"They can both play at the next level. They just continued to improve throughout the year. They're both good students and they have a lot more room for growth physically. The ceiling is high on both of them."
Down the street at South Hills, there are no official offers yet for running back Jamel Hart and receiver/defensive back Jamie Canada, but Huskies head coach Steve Bogan expects that to change soon.
“Both will sign somewhere,” Bogan said. “Both are qualifiers. There should be no glitches there. Arizona State was high on both of them, but all that went into flux when they fired their coach. We have phone calls and guys coming to look at films, like San Diego State and San Jose State.”
Canada was hurt by missing his all-important junior season because of injury. But he had a dynamite senior year at receiver and caught 50 passes for 1,019 yards and 12 touchdowns. Hart rushed for 1,315 yards and 16 touchdowns.
Canada’s older brother Jordan is playing at Montana and is trying to lure his brother to join him, Bogan said. Villanova is another school of interest for Canada.
Charter Oak annually sends out a nice group of next-level talents. This year should be no different.
Quarterback Travis Santiago’s outstanding senior season has attracted the interest of UCLA interim head coach Michael Johnson, who played locally at Baldwin Park. But with UCLA recently hiring Jim L. Mora as its new head coach, Johnson’s status at the school is up in the air.
Plus, he’s in the running to be the next head coach at Akron where he played his college ball.
“He’s told Travis he’s taking him with him wherever he goes,” Charter Oak head coach Lou Farrar said of Johnson. “So, we’ll see what happens. Travis might have a good baseball season and get drafted. He wants to go to UCLA and he’s doing everything he can to go there.”
Other schools that have expressed in Santiago are Azusa Pacific, Sacramento State, Colorado, Western New Mexico, Idaho, Portland State, Fresno State and Montana State
Farrar reported 6-foot-5 receiver Chris Gilchrist has an offer from Sacramento State and interest “from everywhere,” including Iowa State, Colorado State and Idaho.
Jonathan Thropay’s impressive season at safety for the Chargers is garnering plenty of recruiting looks. Farrar said Navy looks like the favorite, but Colgate is in the mix. Farrar expects even more interest in Thropay in the coming weeks.
Chargers lineman Louis Oliva has interest from APU and University of La Verne, among others. Meanwhile, fellow Charger Daniel Johnson is getting looks from Cal-Poly San Luis Obispo, Sacramento State and UC Davis.
Diamond Ranch all-purpose standout Andrew Fischer suffered through an injury plagued senior season but was impressive when healthy.
Because of Fischer’s academic prowess, he’s likely headed for Harvard.