Steve Stephens

Many are vying for the versatile defensive back. Could Stanford gain some ground?

“The coaches were very welcoming and I felt like part of the team for that one day.”

Fresno Edison (Calif.) safety Steve Stephens has been one of the hotter recruits out west. The four-star safety holds offers from Arizona State, Boise State, Cal, Colorado, Fresno State, LSU, Nebraska, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, UCLA, USC, Washington State, Eastern Washington and UNLV.

While the Cardinal haven’t yet offered Stephens, the safety visited The Farm a few months ago.

“The coaches were very welcoming and I felt like part of the team for that one day,” Stephens said. “I talked a long time with (defensive backs coach Duane Akina) and it was a really enjoyable time.”

Getting to talk to Coach Akina helped bring a familiarity to his hometown of Fresno despite being nearly 175 miles away.

“He reminded me somewhat of the coaches that I have now, and I like that a lot," Stephens said. "He just broke down the way he runs his defense."

Stephens also sees his skill set in the current Stanford defensive backs, whether it be cornerback or safety. 

“I could fit really well into that system,” Stephens said. “The coaches were talking to me about playing corner as well as safety. They like how I can go around and hit all three of those positions.”

Right now, Stephens is working on his footwork and was recently named an Under Armour All-American as well as a participant in the Polynesian Bowl.

“I knew I was an All-American but that just solidified me as an All-American,” Stephens said.

In terms of recruiting, programs like USC, Cal, Oregon, Nebraska and Colorado are among the programs that are jumping out to him. 

Stanford could certainly put themselves within that conversation with an offer.

“That would be huge,” Stephens said. “They don't offer everyone they take the process very slow and make sure they get a well-rounded guy.”

Stephens isn’t rushing his decision or any aspect of his recruitment right now, saying that Signing Day could be the day he reveals his decision.

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