2005 QB Prospect Mark Sanchez

He's considered among the best quarterbacks on the west coast in the 2005 class, and 6-3, 200-pound <b>Mark Sanchez</b> of powerhouse Mission Viejo takes a little time to talk about his early favorite colleges...

One of the top quarterbacks in California for the 2005 class will be Mission Viejo (Calif.) High's Mark Sanchez, 6-3, 200. The strong armed signal-caller from Orange County will also lead one of the top prep teams in the nation, and with the schedule that Mission Viejo has this upcoming season, he will definitely get to test his mettle.

"We play Los Alamitos, Mater Dei, Long Beach Poly, and then De La Salle," said Sanchez. "It looks like it's going to be a promising year for us, and we have a real tough schedule but we'll be ready."

Sanchez led the Diablos to the CIF Southern Section Division II finals in 2003, where they took an unblemished 13-0 record before falling to Hart in the championship game. On the season, Sanchez was 143-for-191 for 2,460 yards and 29 touchdowns.

"Once the season starts, college is a second though. We lost to Hart in the finals and we have something to prove this season. Same thing happened to them, they lost to Mission Viejo in the finals then came back with that schedule and were prepared for the finals," said Sanchez.

But while it's the off-season, the spring of his junior year, Sanchez is beginning to give some thought to where he wants to continue his football career when his days in a Diablo uniform come to an end.

"It's really early right now, but I am hearing from Washington State, LSU, Oklahoma, Washington, Wisconsin, Oregon, USC, Arizona, Florida State, Colorado, Illinois, Arizona State, Boston College, UCLA and Oregon State. Most of the Pac-10," said Sanchez.

To date, Sanchez has no offers, but doesn't think that will be a problem. And with it still being early, Sanchez has a modest top five, but concedes that it is still early to begin paring it down.

"I'm wide open. I like Texas, Notre Dame. They run the West Coast offense. LSU is a possibility as is USC and Oklahoma. Distance doesn't really matter to me," said Sanchez.

While the Bruins aren't on his early list of favorites, Sanchez did say they are still in the mix. "They are definitely not out. UCLA is definitely a possibility for me."

Sanchez is coached by renowned Southern California prep coach Bob Johnson, his son Bret (offensive coordinator) and former Bruin receiver Scott Miller.

"I am fortunate to have just a great coaching staff to play under. The coaches, if things aren't going right in practice, Coach (Bret) Johnson will throw the ball and Coach Miller will run the patterns and he'll show us how it's done. They've both been through recruiting, Coach Miller has been in the NFL, Coach (Bob) Johnson had two sons go through recruiting, so having coaches like that makes a world of difference. Coach Johnson is that he is real helpful with recruiting. We had a meeting and he talked with us about academics, the SAT/ACT, admissions, applications, the important stuff aside from football."

Sanchez plans to attend a handful of camps this summer, in hopes of impressing more coaching staffs.

"I'll go to the Nike Camps, but as for school camps, I don't know where I'll go yet. I would love to be able to go to the Elite 11 Camp. That's a good measuring stick and see how I stack up there."

A fine student, Sanchez sports a 3.66 GPA and scored a 1050 on the PSAT.

"My parents are really stressing academics to me. That it is the most important thing for me. When I look at a school, I am going to look at things like the academics, the climate, the environment, things aside from football," said Sanchez.

So what is his timetable for a decision?

"I want to narrow it down to about 5-6 schools before the season, then decide after that. The only thing about an early commitment is I haven't had one school I really grew up liking that makes me just want to commit to them. I want to feel that out."

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