"You could tell something was going on," said Merrill. "The whole coaching staff was watching every drill and everywhere I was at, so I had a feeling something was going on."
The Gig Harbor, Wash., star safety spent over an hour with coach Bruce Read talking about the program at Oregon State, recruiting and the game of football.
"We just had a blast," said Merrill. "We kicked it off really well." And then he got the news from coach Mike Riley.
"He said 'We do want you and we do want to offer you a scholarship,' so I consider that a verbal" said Merrill. "If that's not a verbal (offer), I don't know what is...He said "You're a great player, I think you'll mix in very well here.'"
MERRILL WENT ON to say he doesn't know when he'll receive the scholarship offer, saying the Beaver staff told him NCAA rules don't allow for schools to give an offer in writing at a school's camp, but that he also considers it a done deal.
"(Riley) said 'What we're going to do is we're going to talk about it as a staff and make sure this is what they want too. And I know they do, but we're just going to talk a bit more'," said Merrill. "He said I could give him a call at any time...and that we'll talk it over some more and make sure this is the right way for you and the right way for us. And then we'll go ahead and make it official (in writing)."
"They verbally expressed they want me at their program. And I really enjoyed (the OSU camp).
Merrill went on to say he found the OSU facilities and stadium beyond impressive. He added the Northwest schools are the ones standing out for him right now, with it being too close for him to name a frontrunner.
"I really do like Oregon and Oregon State. And of course my home state schools in Washington and Washington State. I wasn't able to make it WSU's camp because of everything that's going on. I called them and I apologized. That was a camp I felt like I could get another offer out of.."
"Those four schools are pretty much all even. And I do like Colorado, I don't want them to think I'm blowing them off."
"Oregon really, really likes me," added Merrill. "I'm they're No. 1 safety right now. Coach Neal said before they offer me they want to evaluate four other guys because they can only offer one safety. He said there are no negatives about me, he just wants to make sure they're making the right choice... And I feel fine with that."
"Coach Reed said right now this program is putting the same amount of players as USC the last two years in the NFL and they'll continue to do so," said Merrill. "That's a plus. I was very happy to hear that."
Jake Merrill profile