Coach's Corner: John Featherstone, El Camino

Erick Faatagi has a great opportunity to play in his first season as a Colorado Buffalo. Inside, Faatagi's coach at El Camino Junior College, John Featherstone, talks about the big offensive guard.

When asked who he thought would be the immediate impact players in the 2006 recruiting class, Colorado head coach Dan Hawkins has downplayed expectations. However, the one player he has mentioned is junior college transfer Erick Faatagi, who is expected to compete for a spot in the two-deep at offensive guard.

Faatagi will enroll at Colorado this summer and have three years to play two.

The 6-foo-4, 340-pounder played the past two seasons at El Camino Junior College in Torrance, Calf., under head coach John Featherstone. Faatagi was one of 14 players off of last year's El Camino team that signed to played Division-I football next year.

Featherstone played under Don Coryell at San Diego State in the 1960s, while El Camino offensive assistant coach Gene Engle played under Bill Walsh at Stanford. Featherstone said El Camino uses much of the offensive philosophies the two coaches learned when they played under the storied Coryell and Walsh. Whatever they do, it worked in 2005 as El Camino went 11-1.

Featherstone had this to say about Faatagi.

BSN: Tell me about Erick
Erick was a real fine player for us, an all-conference player this year coming out of the Mission Conference, which everybody says is the best in the country. We really had a nice line this year. Erick's going to Colorado, Mark Gray, our center, is going to California, our tackle (Marvin Arnold) is going to Colorado State.

Erick came out of Dorsey (High) as a predictor because he was a good student, but he had a bad knee. He came to us and honed his skills for two years. Played a lot as a freshman and, obviously, started this year. He's got big upside because he's a big, physical guy who when he gets ornery, boy, he's a dominating player.

We had a good offense this year so sometimes the kids can get complacent. But Erick's a guy that when he has to put the nose to the grindstone he's going to be a guy that can pancake guys. Very good drive blocker and good pass protector. Big body, good family, good mom and pop.

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