It’s currently 25 degrees in Huntersville, N.C.
“We’re over here freezing,” four-star Southlake Christian running back Robert Washington said with a chuckle when reached on the phone Friday evening.
That’s one of the reasons Washington was excited to receive a scholarship offer from the USC coaching staff earlier in the day.
“It was amazing. It was a blessing just from being Tailback U and everything,” Washington said. “The high-quality coaching they’re doing, bringing in the high-quality recruits and producing high-quality NFL prospects. It’s definitely an honor to get an offer from them.”
Washington called the offer a “great Friday night present.”
“It kind of caught me off guard. Coach Nansen DM’ed me on Twitter and said I got some good news for you. He said call me. He got me on the phone and then the head coach offered me. It was definitely a surprise — a great surprise to get.”
Washington has rushed for nearly 6,000 yards in his first three high school seasons while averaging 10.5 yards per carry and amassing 66 touchdowns on the ground. But he’s also been a guy that Southlake Christian can send out of the backfield on passing downs and use him to create mismatches against linebackers. In the last two seasons, Washington has 23 catches for 469 yards and three touchdowns.
USC’s desire to recruit and create complete running backs is one of the things that intrigues Washington.
“I know what they did this year with a couple of running backs. They run the spread, and they create the complete back. The NFL wants a catcher, a runner. He can block. He can run passing routes. So that’s what they do that really excites me.”
USC’s tradition at the running back position is another thing that stands out for Washington.
“USC is a great place and it was definitely an honor — a high honor — to get an offer like that because they’re known with the tradition of tailbacks and and the high quality of recruits they bring in — the high-quality players they create. So i feel honored to get an offer like that.”
The 5-foot-10, 215-pound rusher plans to commit early and focus on his senior season on the gridiron. He has set his decision date for April 25. Washington, who said he has been to Los Angeles twice before, said he wants to get out to USC so he can better assess the coaching staff and their personalities.
“I’m definitely wanting to get out there so I can talk to Coach Nansen in person, so I can catch up with him and really talk to him and see what type of guy he is. I talked to him on the phone earlier today obviously.”
Along with USC, Washington said he hopes to get to North Carolina for an unofficial visit and possibly down to Alabama as well, but said he has to see what all trips his spring schedule will allow him. Washington holds offers from several big-time programs all over the country from Ohio State to Nebraska to TCU to a handful of Pac-12 schools.
“Location doesn’t really matter to me. It’s really just what school fits me and the type of back I want to be. And what type of person I want to be. So if it’s in LA or New York or New Jersey or Michigan or anywhere, it doesn’t matter. It’s really what fits me.”
How does Los Angeles fit Washington?
“It’s nice. It’s a beautiful place. It’s hot all year long so you can’t complain. You don’t get none of this snowy weather — this cold weather. I guess you can’t complain. They’ve got nice people. It’s a beautiful town and it’s a beautiful place to live.”