Wyoming Looks West
Wyoming has found fertile recruiting grounds in the Northwest. After pulling six prospects out of Oregon and Washington last season, the Cowboys are back in full force.
The coaching staff has offered at least fourteen prospects from the two states in the 2013 class, including five new offers this week. Wilsonville (Ore.) wide receiver Tanner Shipley, Portland (Ore.) Central Catholic safety Dallin Leavitt, Portland (Ore.) Jesuit offensive tackle Max Rich and Tacoma (Wash.) Bellarmine Prep wide receiver Calvin Chandler all added offers this week. Wyoming even started targeting 2014 prospects when they offered Portland (Ore.) Central Catholic junior defensive end Connor Humphreys.
Two main factors have allowed the Cowboys to be so successful in recruiting the states. First, the Wyoming coaching staff has multiple ties to the region, specifically to the University of Washington, that have allowed them quickly build connections with high school coaches. The second is that the coaching staff has recognized the void in the Northwest recruiting landscape.
The region is dominated by the four Pac-12 programs located in the two states, but unlike California and Utah there are no smaller FBS level programs. FCS schools like Eastern Washington, Portland State and Montana have benefited from this in the past and it seems schools are taking notice.
High school programs in Oregon and Washington are turning out more prospects than ever and many of those players have FBS talent even if they aren't quite Pac-12 level performers. This is the group that Wyoming is targeting. Boise State has always kept a watchful on the region, plucking out players like QB Kellen Moore, but California is their main recruiting area.
It will be interesting to watch Wyoming's continued presence in the states over the coming years and to see which programs, if any, try and follow suit. Idaho and Air Force have also spent significant time in the two states and the presence of coaches like Jason Gesser certainly indicate they plan on giving Wyoming a battle.
Nic Sblendorio - WR - Sammamish (Wash.) Skyline
Sblendorio is still waiting for his first offer, but is doing everything in his power to get there. He put on another dominating performance at the Barton Combine this past weekend. Sblendorio ran his 40-yard dash in the 4.7 range, the fastest time of the day and unlike most reported 40 times, they used an accurate laser timer. Sblendorio is a complete receiver that would slide into the slot at the college level. He is also being recruited as a safety.