Sam Webb: Kind of take me through the year. How did things go for you and your team last year?
Travis Waller: “It was good. We actually did very well this season. Obviously not what we wanted but better than most people expected. We went 6-6, which is pretty average, but people stepped in and did a great job as a team. We have a lot of people returning. It actually started out with me battling it out for the quarterback position, which was crazy. About two weeks before our first game, they announced me as quarterback. I’ve got to get my whole team situated, let them know I’m the guy. They have to trust and believe in me. The first game didn’t go too well. The offense did pretty good, but as a whole team we didn’t really succeed, but what really got us on the map was when we beat Long Beach Poly. That really set everything off. Some players got offered two weeks after that game. From there went 2-3… not the best, not the best what we expected, but we were still satisfied. We still made it to the playoff. Definitely preseason it was one of the hardest schedules in the nation. De La Salle was a tough loss for us… Long Beach Poly, Bishop Gorman, La Mirada and Edison.”
Sam Webb: I’m curious, were you just the backup last year… were you playing a different position. What kind of led up to you being named the starter this year?
Travis Waller: “Last year I got beat out, which was my sophomore year. I played receiver for three games and then (the starter) got hurt. Then they just made me the starting quarterback for the rest of the season. This year we battled it out and I worked hard before the season started and I beat him in that battle. I beat him out and the coaches noticed that.
Sam Webb: So do you remember what your stats were from last year?
Travis Waller: “I think I passed for 1700 and rushed for 1200 yards.”
Sam Webb: Everyone describes you as a dual-threat guy and those stats back that up. Still, I kind of like to hear guys describe their own games. Give me a scouting report on Travis Waller.
Travis Waller: “People know me for my feet, I can run the ball a lot. I don’t really see myself as a running quarterback. I consider myself as a pocket passer that can also run and make plays. I can make something out of nothing. That is one thing that is definitely good about my game.
Sam Webb: Clearly your stock is on the rise with a number of schools. At what point did you begin noticing them being more interested?
Travis Waller: “It was definitely that Long Beach Poly game. My coach told me that all those coaches contacted him that next morning right away asking, ‘who is the quarterback?’ That definitely got my started out on the recruiting process.”
Sam Webb: How many offers do you have on the table right now?
Sam Webb: Those are schools on your side of the country. Is distance from home a big deal for you?
Travis Waller: “I talked to my mom about that and she said whatever makes you comfortable. If you are happy with it, I’m happy with it. That’s not a problem.”
Sam Webb: Did you grow up a fan of any school?
Travis Waller: “I don’t really have a favorite school. I watch a lot of college football. That’s all I watch is college football. I’m definitely not a big fan of a school.”
Sam Webb: So let’s talk about Michigan. What are the coaches saying to you about how you fit into their quarterback position?
Travis Waller: “They came out about a month ago and then I talked to Coach Nuss on Twitter. I gave him a call and we talked about how definitely I can fit into their program and make things happen and I can help make them become a winning football team. (We talked about) how I bring my athleticism to the table, extend plays, and do the spread offense. He also told me, ‘we’re not just spread. We also do under center, single back…that type of stuff. ‘ I was actually excited to hear that. I actually do like to drop back. Being in shotgun is fun, but I also like to go under center. So that’s what I like to hear. Coach Nuss said we’re going to get this thing started. A lot of schools don’t offer quarterbacks until they’ve seen them throw. He wanted to offer me, but until he sees me throw he is going to hold that offer. Hopefully, when he sees me throw I’ll get an offer and I’ll be good. That’s what I’m looking forward to.”
Sam Webb: Did he give you an idea of when he would be able to get out and see you throw?
Travis Waller: “Yes, spring ball. “
Sam Webb: So what are your thoughts on Michigan at this point?
Travis Waller: “I was shocked when I heard from them. I was like okay, Michigan, I’m talking to Michigan now. That’s a powerhouse football team. I was surprised to hear from them. I just keep talking to them every week and hopefully we can get it going.”
Sam Webb: I know it has only been over the phone and Twitter thus far with Coach Nussmeier, but what do you think of him thus far?
Travis Waller: “He definitely seemed like a cool coach. Obviously when things need to be said, I know he’ll say it and make sure it happens. He definitely seemed like the kind of guy I could relate too.”
Sam Webb: Take me through your thought process as far as the criteria for your decision.
Travis Waller: “Definitely my mom is going to take part in that on the academic side. We’re going take visits to the schools, see if I fit and feel like it is family… and how the atmosphere is. My mom… how she likes academics and will it be a good academic fit. If something happen unfortunately, I will have something to help me out academically with a degree. She is definitely looking at that. I would like to commit before my senior year. That’s my plan. That’s it.”
Sam Webb: You mentioned that Michigan talked about coming out to see you in the spring. Has Coach Nussmeier talked to you at all about getting out to visit Michigan?
Travis Waller: “Yeah he just gave me the school schedule today and I’m going to go over it with my mom. Hopefully, I can try to get it out there soon.”
Sam Webb: You are talking about coming this way for a spring practice?
Travis Waller: “Yeah.”
Sam Webb: Have you been to any other schools for visits yet?
Travis Waller: “Yes. I’ve been to Oregon and that is my only school visit so far.”
Sam Webb: Have any schools starting to stick out on your list? Do you have an early favorite or group of favorites on your list?
Travis Waller: “I don’t have any favorites right now.”
Sam Webb: What are some of the other schools you’re hearing from currently and what are the schools you’d like to start hearing from?
Travis Waller: “I’ve heard from Oregon, Arizona State, Washington State, Utah, Ohio State, Penn State, Maryland, and UCLA. A lot of PAC-12 schools and some schools from the south. As far as schools that I want to hear from, I really don’t have any on my list right now.”