Noble Still Weighs Options

Woodland Hills (Calif.) Taft defensive tackle Craig Noble remains committed to Washington, but he said another Pac-10 school remains in the mix for him, and he talks about what he's doing to secure an offer from them, and his relationship with some of their committed recruits...

Woodland Hills (Calif.) Taft defensive tackle Craig Noble (6-3, 275) says he remains committed to Washington, but he's still keeping all of his options open.

"I'm committed to Washington, but I'm still listening to other schools," said Noble. "If Signing Day were tomorrow, I'd sign with Washington, but this is a tough decision."

Noble has six offers, from the Huskies, Oregon, Florida International, Washington State, Oregon State and Ole Miss. UCLA is another school showing an interest in Noble, though the Bruins have yet to offer. Florida also has been contacting Noble of late.

"The coaches said that there wasn't enough video on me to see what I could do, so they wanted me to come to camp. I'm supposed to check with them on Monday and talk with Coach (Bob) Connelly to find out where I stand. They want to see my last semester grades to."

Florida has ties to Noble, with former Taft coach Troy Starr the Gators' new director of football operations.

"I knew about Florida when Josh (Portis) went there, and they've told me that after the season, they'll let me know if I have an offer. They only have like 17 scholarships to give out right now, so Coach Starr said to just be patient. I may take an official visit there.

In fact, Noble plans to take all five official visits if he feels the need to. But he acknowledged that it's almost exclusively a two-horse race.

"Really, UCLA is the only other school I'm looking at besides Washington. And I'm still committed to Washington. UCLA is close to home, though, and a lot of my friends are going there," said Noble.

Those friends include several of UCLA's committed players from the City Section.

"I'm friends with probably 12 of them," said Noble. "I'm really good friends with Datone Jones, Rahim Moore, B-Price (Brian Price)," said Noble. E.J. (Woods) said he's begging the coach to offer me. That would be cool to play with all those guys."

Noble and Moore also have a friendly rivalry.

"My goal this year is to be the defensive player of the year, but they may give the edge to Rahim," said Noble. "So I'll have to put on a big show."

That wouldn't be anything new for Noble, who burst onto the scene at the Los Angeles Combine, performing the best of any defensive tackle and going at it with Matt Kalil,'s #1 tackle, more than once.

"That whole day was crazy," said Noble. "I know I showed I could hold my own. People didn't really know about me, they all thought I was just an offensive lineman, but I showed I could play tackle."

With Starr now in Gainesville, Noble said that Taft is quickly getting adjusted to a new head coach, but he likes what he sees.

"We're going to be pretty good this year. We lost some guys like Malcolm (Smith), Darrion (Weems) and Jeshua (Anderson), but we should be in pretty good shape," said Noble.

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