Utah's newly hired defensive backs coach Sharrieff Shah isn't wasting any time when it comes to recruiting.
After just three months on the job Shah has already identified and targeted some of the West's top talent, including Loyola (CA) High School star Cameron Walker.
Walker, a 5'11" 175-pound cornerback, carries a four-star rating from Scout.com and is being courted by a list of schools from across the West.
"I currently have offers from Utah, Michigan, Arizona State, Boise State, Oregon State, and San Diego State."
Walker had a solid junior year in 2011 playing on both sides of the ball. He's a multi-talented athlete with skills at both running back and cornerback. Though he enjoys playing both positions, his recruiting attention from coaches is coming primarily on the defensive side of the ball. Last season he rushed for 490 yards averaging just under 6 yards per carry on offense while on defense he tallied 43 tackles (34 of them solo stops), 2.5 sacks, 2 pass breakups, 2 interceptions, and both a fumble and an interception return for a touchdown.
Utah's recruitment of Walker began just recently but quickly went from emails and texts to a full scholarship offer. Although Cameron says he hadn't been hearing much from the Utah coaches before his offer, the letter he received just weeks ago was pretty specific in expressing Utah's desire to bring him aboard.
"I've been hearing from two coaches, Coach Kalani (Sitake) and Coach Shah. The coach I got the offer letter from was Coach Shah. We haven't talked on the phone yet but they've had me fill out some questionnaires and have sent some letters and texts. Then I got this letter a few weeks ago with the offer that says ‘We seriously want you to be part of our Utah family' and I was like yeah okay. They [Utah] definitely have a chance. I'm just trying to learn more about the program because I don't know much about them right now."
With the recruiting process still young Cameron says he's considering all schools right now and hopes to visit each of the programs that have offered him.
"I'm planning on taking visits to the schools that I have offers from during my dead period in late July and early August. I don't currently have a top-5, but I'll probably have that figured out by August. I don't really know yet [when I'll make my decision], I'm just waiting for when the time is right"
Walker is a Los Angeles native who grew up around programs like USC and UCLA and the prestige of the Pac-10 now Pac-12 and he's quick to admit it's a conference that he has his eyes on. Although he says getting away from home for a while would be good for him, he has reasons to want to stay close as well.
"I think it would be good to get away from home because I'd get that experience of living on my own. I could start doing stuff for myself without my parents helping out with everything and kind of grow a little bit. At the same time though it would be good to stay at home so my parents could go to my games and watch me play because I know they haven't missed a single game since I started playing when I was 10."
As August nears Cameron says he has a few things he's looking for in the school he'll ultimately pick.
"Playing time would be nice but that's not really what I'm looking for. I know not to expect anything when I get there because there will be guys that have been there for 4 or 5 years before me waiting their time for a spot on the depth chart. I'm really looking for a school with good academics first and foremost, and after that I want a good football program and good relationships with the team and coaches. I want to be able to get along with my teammates real well because I'll be spending the next 4 or 5 years of my life with them."
Shah Targeting One of LA's Top Corners
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