Kai Golden was one of the top performers in the defensive line group at The Opening Regional in Oakland recently, using his size and strength to overwhelm blockers at times.
The three-star defensive tackle from Tucson (Ariz.) Mountain View showed a tenacious side and kept his feet moving through contact to move offensive linemen while also using his hands well to keep them at a distance.
On the recruiting front, the 6-foot-3, 290-pound prospect holds a few offers, including Virginia, which he already visited this year.
"I want to major in mechanical engineering, so I'm looking at some schools that have the better programs," Golden told Scout.com. "That's really what I'm looking for.
"I took a visit to California and they've got a great program there. Air Force was on my list even before they offered, so I'm really excited about that. And there's Virginia, which is one of the better academic schools on the East Coast. I'm also looking a bit at NC State out there and Texas Tech and TCU."
While in the Bay Area for the Nike camp, Golden was able to drop by Berkeley to see the campus and meet some of the coaches.
"I've been talking to the linebackers coach at Cal and the visit was really nice," Golden said. "It's a beautiful campus, the coaches were pretty interested and I really liked the visit. I couldn't stay long, but I definitely enjoyed it out there."
The Cavaliers are the lone Power Five program to offer at the moment and Golden said his trip out there was a big one.
"We still talk on a regular basis, but they have offered quite a few def tackles so we'll see," Golden said. "The visit went great. It's a great school."
Golden has also established contact with both in-state programs.
"I've been to Arizona State and Arizona multiple times, most recently for the spring game," Golden said. "I got a chance to talk to coach Rich Rodriguez at Arizona. They've told me they like me and my film, so we'll see. I made it out to ASU for the junior day and liked it. They both came out to spring ball and I'm hoping to keep contact with both coaching staffs."
Moving forward, Golden said he's planning out some camp stops for the next month.
"We're looking at dates right now," he said. "The coaches from Oklahoma are hoping to get me to camp. I'm also hoping to get back out to California, maybe get out to UCLA again. I camped there my freshman year and, at that age, it was just a fun thing to go and do. It was, more or less, a thing of enjoyment, so if I went back now it would be of more importance."
Golden was credited with 40 total tackles, including five for a loss, and two forced fumbles in 10 games as a junior last season.