'08 Unwrapped: Delano Howell

When discussing Southern California prep football, talk inevitably turns to the quarterbacks of Newhall (Calif.) Hart High School. There is a special running back in the junior class, however, for the Indians. Delano Howell scored 35 touchdowns last fall and is a name to watch in Stanford and Pac-10 recruiting this year.

Newhall (Calif.) Hart High School running back Delano Howell (5-11, 185) is a quiet guy off the field, but get him between the lines and he plays with noise.

One of the better running back prospects in Southern California in the class of 2008, Howell had a big junior season running the ball - impressive considering Hart has always been known for their passing game.

"I feel like I can run and receive well, and I have a good overall game," Howell describes.  "I like to play on offense, but if a school wanted to recruit me on defense, I could play corner or safety."

Howell doesn't have a scholarship offer just yet, but a host of Pac-10 schools have been showing interest in him.

"A few Pac-10 schools have been writing me, and I'm keeping my eyes open to those schools," says Howell.  "Washington and Stanford are two, and I am interested in UCLA, USC and Cal."

Washington has an immediate connection to Howell.  His older brother Dan has played linebacker for the Huskies for the past three seasons, and Howell has kept a close watch on Tyrone Willingham's squad.

"I haven't talked with them too much yet, but I know my brother is enthusiastic about the opportunity for me to play there," Howell notes.  "I'm planning to take an unofficial visit there this spring."

Stanford has the academic edge for Howell, who happens to be an excellent student, carrying a 4.4 GPA in honors classes.

"Stanford is an overall good school and it's a possibility," Howell allows.  "I have received letters from the new staff and hope to hear some more from them.  I will probably be calling them soon."

Howell said that most schools are recruiting him as an athlete.

"They haven't told me what position that they would like me to play yet," he says.  "I think they would decide that later."

Howell says that he would prefer to make an early decision, but with no offers from which to choose, he is still in wait-and-see mode.

"If I was receiving some offers, than yes I'd like to make my decision early on," Howell offers.  "I want to take advantage of the opportunities I'm being given."

The Hart High School junior says that he does not feel it is time to name a leader, nor does he indicate a school even standing out.

"I'm pretty wide open right now," he maintains.

Howell has been able to use his brother as a resource in recruiting, and his brother has provided invaluable advice already.

"When I have a question, I just go to my brother.  He tells me to be patient and what's going to happen and just to see what I have available," Howell describes.  "He and my mom want whatever is best for me, wherever that may be."

During his junior year, Howell rushed for 1,491 yards on 235 carries and scored 29 touchdowns on the ground.  He also caught 41 passes for 625 yards and six touchdowns, added 30 tackles and two interceptions and even punted for the Indians.  He earned First Team All-CIF Northern Division honors and was a First Team All-State Underclass selection.

Howell will take the SAT for the first time this weekend.

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