Daniel Sorensen Excited To Be A Cougar

At 6 feet 2 inches and 210 pounds, hard-hitting California safety Daniel Sorensen has left his mark in the Colton High School defensive backfield this season. Now this top safety prospect is looking forward to bringing his skills to the next level at BYU.

He was a second-team all-state defensive back as a junior in California. As a senior, Daniel Sorensen was awarded with first-team offensive, defensive and special teams honors at his team banquet.

"I got first-team offense and first-team defense," said Sorensen. "I also got first-team punter, which is weird because I only punted the ball a few times. I averaged around 50 yards [per punt] I think. All-CIF hasn't come out yet, so I'm not sure what I got there."

Known as a hard-hitting defensive specialist, Sorensen feels he had a successful season, and the honors he received reflect that. Nevertheless, the season had a disappointing ending.

"We did alright and went to the semi-finals," said Sorensen. "It was kind of a crazy game that was played in the rain, so it was kind of like playing in a big mud bowl. We lost to Canyon Springs, the same team we lost to last year. We had eight fumbles, or something like that. If we were able to play someplace else, I think we would have killed them."

Colton High School defeated Rancho Verde in the second round of playoffs. Rancho Verde assistant coach, Coach Hifo, got a firsthand look at this future BYU Cougar in action.

"Hey, that kid is legit," said Coach Hifo. "He's a very good player for Colton High School, and I got a chance to watch him play up close when we played them. He's big like a linebacker at the safety position and can hit like nobody's business."

"[Coach Hifo] came up and talked to me after the game," said Sorensen. "He's a really cool guy and came up to me and said, ‘Hey man, you looked really good out there and I heard a lot about you.' He said, ‘I'll be watching you up at BYU.' He was a really cool guy."

Despite his on-field successes and the glowing compliments from Coach Hifo, Sorensen said he feels he would have had a better season in terms of laying the helmet to opponents if teams had thrown over the middle more.

"I was a little disappointed this year," Sorensen said. "I'm not sure why, but it seemed like plays weren't coming to me. A lot of quarterbacks weren't throwing over the middle, and I wasn't having a lot of opportunities to make plays like that. I was a little frustrated. I only ended the season with four interceptions, and it just seemed like no one was throwing my way."

"It was like finally they started throwing over the middle," Sorensen said. "I was able to then make some plays. I also got a chance to make a few hard hits, but not many."

On the defensive side of the ball, Sorensen recorded 75 total tackles, averaging 6.8 tackles per game. He recorded four interceptions for a total of 119 return yards. He also recorded three fumble recoveries for 22 return yards.

But his contributions don't stop there. Sorensen doubled on offense as well, playing spot duties at both the quarterback and tight end positions when needed.

"They kind of moved me all over the place," Sorensen said. "During the preseason they had me playing quarterback. Once we got into league play they put me in at tight end. I think they needed me in there to help block. Our offense is more of a running offense, and so I think the coaches felt I could help out with blocking for the run game. We only pass around four times a game, if that."

Sorensen received some quarterback duties last year, and with quarterback being a tradition within his family's pedigree (Sorensen has two older brothers in - Brandon and Bryan - that also played quarterback in high school and at the junior college level), he fared well when given the opportunity.

"I played a little bit of quarterback last year, and that's why they wanted to put me in," said Sorensen. "I have a decent arm and I can throw the football far. I'm just a little shaky on accuracy, but I'm a little more mobile than our quarterback that finished up our season. I ran a lot of quarterback power sweeps and stuff up the middle. I think we threw the ball a little more with me in as quarterback also."

Now that his prep season is over, Sorensen said he is excited about moving on. He will be moving up to Utah over the summer and staying at his grandfather's house, where he will be able to work out in preparation for fall camp in the high mountain air.

"[My grandpa] lives in Provo up by the Provo Temple. I'll be working out and getting ready. I can't take too much time off, so right now I'm just letting my body recover, and then I'll be hitting the weights again here soon before I come up to Utah."

So what did Sorensen think about BYU's second-straight undefeated conference season and outright conference title?

"I was able to see a couple of games," said Sorensen. "I know they're on a weird channel, so I missed a lot of them. I did get some updates from other sources and stuff. I'm pretty excited about BYU though. I know they dominated the Mountain West and they've received some respect nationally by finishing up within the top 20 or something like that."

At BYU Sorensen will join his first-cousin Justin Sorensen, who is considered to be one of the top kickers in the nation, and who has been invited to attend the Army All-American Bowl in January.

"I've been hearing some crazy stuff about him, man," said a chuckling Sorensen. "I heard he's been kicking 60-yard field goals and stuff like that."

Daniel Sorensen committed early to BYU despite receiving early attention and recruiting letters from Boston College, Washington, Colorado, Arizona State, Nebraska, Duke, UCLA and USC. He also had an offer from Ole Miss, which was the first university to extend a full-ride scholarship offer to him.

"I'm really excited about BYU and I'm kind of over all of that stuff," said Sorensen. "I know where I'm going."

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