The sound of whistles and shouting audible in the background, Jabari Watson stepped aside from the grind of Summit High School spring practice Tuesday to discuss the recent uptick in recruiting interest for the 6-foot-3, 255-pound defensive lineman.
"I'm in the weight room right now," Watson said. "It makes me feel good that schools are noticing the hard work I'm putting in."
The junior from Fontana, Calif., was offered by Boise State last week, starting a string of offers from fellow Mountain West schools. Nevada followed suit an hour later, and New Mexico threw its hat in the ring a few days later.
"I'm hoping more schools keep noticing me and what I can do on the field," Watson said.
The three-star prospect also holds an offer from San Diego State, and is receiving interest from Arizona, Arizona State, Northwestern, Notre Dame, UCLA, USC and Wisconsin. From the schools that have offered him, Watson says the Broncos stand out.
"Boise State came and saw me a couple of weeks before they offered," Watson said. "Coach (Andy) Avalos stopped by."
Avalos is a former Boise State player and current linebackers coach from the Inland Empire, something that created an immediate connection with Watson. BSU corner Donte Deayon, from nearby Rialto, is a friend.
"Avalos is very energetic and is a great guy," he said. "I talked to my (buddy) Donte Deayon and he tells me about how hard they work up there. I like that a lot."
"Schools are looking at me at all positions on the defensive line," he said. "I try to play like Ware and Clowney, but I am open to anywhere coaches need me."
Watson is still feeling out the recruiting process and says he hasn't really thought about a timeframe for making a decision.
"I plan on visiting every school that has an offer for me right now," he said.
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