Linebacker offers from Cougs rising

THE COUGS RECENTLY offered a pair of physical linebacker prospects who hold multiple BCS offers. One is from California, the other from Texas, and both hope to unofficially visit Pullman in the spring or early summer.

Last Thursday, the Cougs extended an offer to Texas product Josh Mabin and recently extended an offer to Californian Curtis Bolton.

Mabin is a versatile linebacker who recorded an impressive 135 tackles as a junior this season for Klein Oak High in Spring, Texas (20 miles north of Houston). He added two forced fumbles, one interception and four pass breakups this season for the Panthers.

The offer from the Cougs, he said, came as a shock.

"My coach relayed the message to me and I had gotten letters from them in the mail, but never talked with their recruiters," Mabin said. "It's always a blessing to hear that a Division-I school wants to recruit you, so I was excited to get that offer from Washington State. I don't know much about them, but I definitely want to do some research on them in the future."

The Cougs are recruiting Mabin as an inside linebacker and the 6-2, 225-pounder said his quickness for his size makes him believe he can make a difference at the next level.

"I have exceptional speed," Mabin said. "I can run with receivers and running backs who run a 4.4, 40-yard dash. I can play sideline to sideline as well. A lot of inside linebackers play within the box, but I can fly to the outside and make a play on the ball."

Mabin has been hearing from plenty of schools and currently holds offers from Baylor, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Boise State and Colorado. Another team, who is yet to offer, has an early lead for Mabin in his recruiting process.

"LSU is definitely my favorite right now," Mabin said. "You could say they are my dream school. "I've taken a few unofficial visits there and it just hit me when I was on campus that it could be a great opportunity to play for them if they decided to offer."

Mabin added that he will take an unofficial visit to Texas A&M this weekend and that he hopes to talk to the WSU coaches soon about possibly scheduling a trip out to the Palouse as well.

As for Bolton, the 6-2, 215-pound prospect picked up a Cougar offer earlier this month, with defensive coordinator and secondary coach Mike Breske extending the scholie for the Cougs.

"Their defensive coordinator said they really liked my film and the coaches think I can fit into their system," Bolton said. "We really just started talking, but I'm looking forward to learning more about their program in the future. They recently started sending me letters last month and I was happy to know they're interested in me. Washington State is in a good area and I like that they're in the Pac-12."

The Vista Murrieta High standout, who also holds offers from UW and Oklahoma, said he's hoping to take a trip to Pullman later on this summer.

"They want me to head up there for their camp in June and I'm going to try and make it up there," Bolton said. "We haven't really talked a whole lot about it, but I was planning on heading to UW for their camp and since WSU is showing me love as well, I feel obligated to stop by there too while I'm up there."

As a junior for the Broncos this season, Bolton recorded 70 tackles, 10.5 sacks and forced three fumbles.

"I have really good range and I'm quick," Bolton said. "I have the strength of a defensive lineman, but I have the speed of a linebacker. That's a big plus for me. I always go to tackle first and I make sure to lock up my guy."

In addition to Bolton and Mabin, the Cougars have known scholarship offers out to linebackers Marquis Ware, Dwight Williams, Jamardre Cobb and D.J. Calhoun, who are all from California.

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