One of the top safeties on the west coast has been impressing scouts and coaches at The Opening regionals a few weeks ago. Chaz Ah You of Provo, UT was named one of Greg Biggins' top performers from the Oakland contest and also visited Stanford for a junior day event that weekend.
How did the four-star safety describe the junior day?
“They were very real with everything,” Ah You said.
Ah You asked the Stanford players and coaches about the game atmosphere. The safety expected to hear about crowds that would rival that of Kyle Field at Texas A&M or the Big House at Michigan.
That wasn’t the case.
“What their response was they have die-hard fans who show up to every game but it’s not the loudest stadium,” Ah You said. “They said they have loyal fans and a very wide network of fans.”
The genuine response from the Stanford reps was a positive for Ah You. It was refreshing to hear about what the experience would really be like.
“It gives me better perspective. Schools only preach the positive and then you go there and everything they preached that was positive isn’t all positive, and it can create a negative vibe with it,” Ah You said. "When they’re real with you and they let you know what's good and what’s not, it helps you get a feel for what to expect. It just makes the transition that much easier.”
Stanford has become one of the top programs vying for Ah You. One of the reasons the Cardinal is attractive to him is the versatility a safety can display on the field.
“I would be able to expose the variety of the things I can do from coverage to physicality,” Ah You said.
Stanford defensive backs coach Duane Akina has developed a strong relationship with the safety. The 6-foot-1.5, 190-pound four-star recruit said each time he and Akina sit down to talk, Ah You comes away with new guidance for taking the next step.
“Every time I go in there, he gives me good advice,” Ah You said. “Every time I go in there, he says they’re going to love me hard but they’re going to coach me hard, which is something that I like to hear.”
Ah You has spent his offseason studying the game of late Washington Redskin and Miami Hurricane Sean Taylor. Wherever he ends up, he wants to be remembered as someone who played the game with Taylor's signature ferocity.
“I want to (be remembered as) vicious and violent on the field and can dominate the game no matter what it was, whether it was tackling or coverage. I want to be remembered as a well-rounded athlete.”
Ah You has made a name for himself in the Utah high school football scene, but he has also made an impact when going up against some of the best in the west coast in events like the Oakland regional of The Opening.
“Coming from Utah, you don’t get to go against the greatest wide receivers, the fastest wide receivers so every time I go out of state, it’s a learning experience,” Ah You said. “This past weekend at The Opening, it was a great challenge there. I was able to improve a lot, learn from my mistakes and see what I need to fix.”
He is working this offseason to continue to be a “vicious” defensive back.
“I want to work on my explosion and footwork,” Ah You said. “I feel like if I can lock those down a little bit more...it will help my game a lot as far as being able to come down and press.“
In addition to the Cardinal, Ah You named UCLA, Oregon, Washington, BYU, Utah Mississippi State, Vanderbilt and Notre Dame as some programs that have been in contact most frequently with him.
Ah You does not plan to commit until after the upcoming season but may shave his list down to a top ten before his senior season.