RB Andrew Mendoza Talks About SJSU Visit

Running back Andrew Mendoza of Central Valley powerhouse Merced High School was in attendance on Saturday at the invitation of the San Jose State football staff. He spoke with Inside Sparta about the visit, and updates his recruiting, including whether an offer from the Spartans is pending.

23,000-plus fans filled Spartan Stadium on Saturday to watch San Jose State take on it's second 2008 BCS Bowl team in as many weeks. One of those in attendance was running back Andrew Mendoza of Merced (Calif) High School. He told Inside Sparta on Friday that he was coming to San Jose at the invitation of SJSU coach Joe Salave'a.

"The trip was very fun, I'm so glad I went!" Mendoza said. "At 6:00 a coach gave all the 30 or so recruits and guests about a half hour tour of the equipment room, medical room, offices, and the dining hall."

It was the first trip to San Jose State for Mendoza and he was immediately impressed with the facilities.

"I really liked the equipment room and how much Nike stuff would be available to us as players," he said. "At the end of the tour they took us on the field and I stood in the endzone with all the other recruits watching pre-game warm up...very cool!"

The 5-foot-11, 183-pound Mendoza was accompanied by his parents and had a chance to chat with Coach Salave'a before the tour.

"We got there around 5:45 and met with Salave'a for five minutes or so," Mendoza said. "No offer was made, he asked me how I was doing, and that he is gonna get down to Merced and watch me play."

Mendoza is a relative unknown at this stage of the recruiting year. During his junior campaign he played primarily on defense so coaches are telling him they need to see more of him this season at the running back position. He is getting interest from other schools, including a couple of Pac-10 programs.

"Northern Arizona invited me to all of their home games as did Washington State," he said. "Sacramento State is still sending me mail and Coach Wood from Cal Poly and I have a good relationship. The last time I talked to Coach Marshall from Cal Berkeley was at their camp and he said he would be talking to me soon as well."

Merced is a traditional Central Valley powerhouse but got off to a rocky start in 2009. They were blown out by Bullard 41-0 on Sept. 4. Mendoza said he had just over 20 yards rushing. He also returns kickoffs.

"Bullard never kicked to me on any off their kickoffs," he said. "That was frustrating."

The Bears had a bye this past week and will host Napa on Sept. 18.

While Mendoza doesn't list a favorite he has always had his eye on the Spartans.

"I can see myself wearing San Jose State's colors," he said.

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Don Hoekwater is the Publisher of Inside Sparta. You may contact Don with any questions, comments, or tips at publisher@insidesparta.com

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