Recruiting TidBits

With the dead summer recruiting period approaching the Arizona coaches are still hard at it evaluating talented prospects around the country. With piles of highlight tapes still to go through and various prospects planning unofficial visits to Tucson the usual "dead" period may not be so dead for Wildcat fans.

While this summer may not be as exciting as the ride we all took last summer in recruiting, it is still shaping up to be an interesting summer.

Fort Worth (North Crowley) offensive tackle Jason Fox is a hot commodity in recruiting circles as he has garnered 20 offers so far this recruiting cycle, including one from the Arizona coaches. Fox told CatTracks that he has "high" interest in the Cats program right now.

"I have 20 offers right now," said the 6-foot-7 inch, 260 pound Fox. "I definitely have a high interest in Arizona, they are one of the schools that I am looking hard at. Those main schools are OSU (Oklahoma State), (Texas) A&M, Miami and Arkansas along with Arizona. I am also looking at Texas Tech, Purdue and Kansas. I am pretty open right now but those schools I am looking at pretty hard right now."

Fox said that he is going to try and visit at least two schools this summer unofficially and he told us that Arizona is one of the schools.

"I am going to try and visit Arizona and Miami this summer," he said. "As soon as possible hopefully but I might wait until July if I have to."

Fox is being recruited by UA tight ends coach Josh Heupel and Fox thinks highly of Heupel, as well as would be position coach Eric Wolford.

"I have spoken to coach Heupel a couple of times so far," Fox said. "He is a nice guy. I spoke to coach Wolford the other day and he seemed like a nice guy also."

Another prospect that is looking at visiting the Tucson campus unofficially this summer is Houston Klein Collins safety Franklin Mitchem. The 6-foot-2 inch, 200 pound safety says that he has seven offers so far.

"I have seven offers from Arizona, Arizona State, Texas Tech, UTEP, Ole Miss, Tulsa and TCU so far," said Mitchem. "I am also hearing from Colorado, Alabama, Tennessee, Northwestern, North Carolina and Wake Forest."

With his size Mitchem is a versatile athlete that could project to safety or linebacker at the next level but Franklin would prefer to stay at safety.

"Most schools are recruiting me as a safety and that is what I like the most," he said. "I would play linebacker if they needed me to but I like to play safety more."

July could be a busy month for Mitchem and his father as they are planning on taking a few unofficial visits during the month.

"Right now I want to go out and visit Arizona and I would go to Arizona State too," he said. "I don't know if I can get to any other schools but I am going to try. I know I want to get to Arizona though if we can work it out."

This past weekend the Arizona coaches hosted a slew of talented athletes at their passing league tournament, their big man camp, their one day Elite camp and the three day football camp. It was a good week for in state prospects as three in state gems, two seniors and one junior to be, left Tucson with offers.

Mesa Red Mountain OL/DL Jon Hargis was always on the UA radar as a defensive lineman but it was his work on the offensive side of the ball that got him his first high major offer from the Cat coaches.

"I did really well playing offensive line at the camp and they offered me," said Hargis. "I have liked U of A for a while now, they have kind of been my favorite because I just get a better feeling down there."

Hargis, who has a learning disability, was impressed by the academic support system that is in place in Tucson.

"Their S.A.L.T. program is one of the best around," he said. "I got to talk to some people when I was down there and they gave me some good information on it."

The other senior to be that came away with an offer was Apache Junction tight end Cody Anderson. According to Anderson, he was supposed to make it down for the one day Elite camp but thanks to a little sick bug he was only able to make the final day of the three day camp. Even that one day was enough for the Wildcat coaches to notice what he brings to the table.

"I did really well I thought," Anderson said. "They offered me a before I left so I know I did well. I think I caught the ball well and proved that I can move around and that I am fast enough to play tight end."

The third offer was made to Everson Griffen, a junior to be defensive end from Agua Fria High School in Avondale. He must have made a huge impression on the Wildcat coaching staff as he is only the second 2007 player to receive a verbal offer form the Wildcat coaching staff.

"I had fun down there," said Griffen. "I liked the coaches a lot and I think I picked quite a few things up that I can use in the future. They told me that I have an offer from Arizona before I left. They said they can't actually give me a written offer before my junior year starts but they said they would send me one as soon as they can."

While at the camp Griffen showed his versatility and lined up at just about every position during the camp drills. He also says that the Arizona coaching staff made a good impression on him.

"I played a little bit of everything," he said. "I played defensive end, I worked out at linebacker and fullback. I played some quarterback and I caught some passes. I had a really good time. The coaches are all really good coaches and they are all nice guys. They are real intense but they can joke around and stuff, it was fun."

Other Notes…

So far the Arizona coaches have made official offers to just three signal callers but that list might grow by at least one in the coming week or two. Flower Mound (TX) Marcus quarterback Nick Stephens recently told Scout.com that he talked to Arizona coaches and they told him they were close to offering him a scholarship.

If they do in deed offer, it is for good reason. Stephens was recently at the Oklahoma State camp where, according to Scout.com Texas Analyst Stacey Dean, he very impressive showing.

"Nick is a good looking quarterback prospect," said Dean, who attended the camp. "He was very comparable to Christian Ponder, who is a guy that I have liked for a while now. Nick has good awareness and has a very good arm."

Another quarterback that was impressive this weekend was San Diego (CA) Mira Mesa signal caller Mike Coughlin. Coughlin was at the Wildcat camp and showed that he has a ton of upside and has all the tools to be a successful quarterback. It would not be a surprise at all to see Coughlin get an offer from the Cats some time in the future either.


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