Crower Remains Solid

St. Augustine High School (San Diego) quarterback Evan Crower, a three-star 2011 Stanford commit, admits to going through the same second- guessing as some of his peers when he heard Jim Harbaugh was leaving the Farm. Now, however, Crower has pushed his chips into the middle, and is all in for Stanford. Here's the backstory…

"I was actually in the shower with the TV on full blast when I heard Jim Harbaugh was going to the 49ers," Evan Crower told The Bootleg in a Friday afternoon interview.

We asked Evan, a 6-foot-3 senior quarterback, if the news, and subsequent coaching search, caused him to waver. Crower was honest.

"Yeah, I'd say I did [waver]," he said. "I'd say everyone did. Jim Harbaugh was the guy and when he left, everything was up in the air. We didn't get a coach for two weeks, and during that two weeks, there were moments when I didn't know what I was going to do. But after I took my official, I was pretty solid to Stanford."

Jim Harbaugh went to the 49ers on Jan. 7, and David Shaw was named his replacement on Jan. 13, so the wait for Stanford's head coach obviously seemed longer than it was for Crower and the Cardinal's other 2011 commits. Still, when Jan. 13 did come, Crower was relieved to find out that it was Shaw who had been promoted to head the program.

"I was in my car and my dad texted me on Shaw," Crower said. "I was just excited because Shaw is a good guy, and I know he'll lead the program just like Harbaugh."

In a busy week, the day after Shaw's Thursday promotion brought the start of Big Visit weekend, which erased any remaining doubts in Crower's mind.

"Just seeing the coaches again and being up there – I've been a couple of times now -- and being with the guys [convinced me]," Crower said of keeping his pledge to Stanford. "I knew I was going to go there in the back of mind, but there was always a slight thought of looking somewhere else."

Still, that thought remained just an idle thought, as Crower reports he didn't talk to any other schools throughout the coaching transition.

Crower says a major factor in his sticking with the Card is that, much like Jim Harbaugh's 2010 squad, David Shaw's squads in 2011 and beyond figure to run a pro-style offense very similar to previous years' versions.

"They said they're running still the pro-style, so the coaching change didn't really affect me as a player. The only thing that changed was Jim Harbaugh leaving. The offense is staying the same, so that didn't affect me as a quarterback."

On Big Visit weekend, Crower roomed with fellow SoCal product Jeff Trojan. Trojan, a walk- on wideout from Huntington Beach's Edison High, did his part, as Crower reports positively on the weekend.

"It was fun, a big official weekend and all the recruits were up there. I had a good time.

"I'd say the highlights, it was fun to just meet all the teachers and hear what they said about combining academics and playing a sport, that it can definitely be done. So just hearing from the teachers, hearing what they have to say, hanging with the guys up there, it was good."

While one factor the weekend lacked was on-the-field football, Stanford's staff compensated by delving into football strategy with the recruits, which the signal caller Crower appreciated.

"They showed us a couple of plays from Stanford's playbook, and we got to hear some of the coaches talk about that," he said. "We had a 20-minute session on reviewing those plays. I liked it. I could definitely get used to it."

Crower also had the opportunity to bond with his future classmates – not to mention a player who got away.

"I actually talked to some of the recruits who've been committed, and I talked to some other guys like Miles Shuler, but I think he's going to Rutgers," Crower said. "He came to my house and spent the night a long time ago, before he was committed anywhere."

Crower, meanwhile, found out some good news about a month ago, as our avid readers will know: he was admitted to Stanford.

"They sent a letter in the mail and it was that, and then I talked to the coaches that night," he said. "That's just a big thing, getting into that school and being admitted. After that, I have to keep up the work but I'm pretty much good. People who've been committed for so long and haven't been admitted start not really panicking but thinking what if they don't get in, what's the backup plan."

In temperament, Crower reminds this reporter of another laid-back Stanford quarterback, also Californian, also a high-school baseball player – Trent Edwards. While Edwards has moved onto the (sometimes) greener pastures of the NFL, for Crower, baseball practices started three weeks ago and it'll be June when he heads up to the Farm to start his pre-freshman summer. Here's hoping when it's all said and done and Crower walks out of Stanford Stadium for the last time, he leaves as respected by the home crowd as the old No. 5 was.


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