IS THERE A BETTER NAME for a wide receiver than Catchings? Out of Escondido, Calif., the fleet-footed Darrell Catchings has verbally committed to Oregon State. The 6-1, 180-pounder has family in Oregon but didn't step foot on the Corvallis campus this summer, didn't go the OSU camp. No matter, with coaches Lee Hull and Mike Riley running point, Catchings knew Oregon State was the place for him.

Catchings held offers from Utah, San Diego State and Colorado State, with burgeoning interest coming from the likes of Cal and Boise State.

"I committed to Oregon State a couple weeks ago," said Catchings. "I know they have a good receiving program and coach (Mike) Riley and he seemed like a pretty nice guy. And coach (Lee) Hull, he seems like a guy that will take care of me.

"They were pretty excited about it, and said I'd be a good addition to their team, and that they were going to work with me and help me improve."

THE 411 ON Catchings is that of an athletic speed merchant (4.39 in the 40) with spring coils for legs. Catchings is one of the top prep high jumpers in the San Diego area.

As a junior, Catchings pulled in 22 catches for 523 yards -- a 23.77 yard average -- with six TDs. He added another 42 yards on four carries, and ran back two punts for touchdowns and took a kickoff to the house.

NAMED TO THE San Diego Hall of Champions' preseason all-CIF team last week, Catchings is about two weeks into the fall camp at Escondido High, and much of the work he put in over the summer has been paying off.

"I think I catch the ball pretty well," said Catchings. "I've been working on my routes, I think I've improved a lot in that area."

Catchings said he hopes to get down to Corvallis as soon as the next couple weeks.

Catchings becomes the seventh known verbal commitment to the 2007 OSU class, joining TE Colby Prince, RB Ahmed Mokhtar, OL Michael Cole, QB Jake Gelakoska, DE Kevin Frahm and DE Carl Sommer.

Darrell Catchings profile

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