Mike Leach making Hawaii a 2013 focus

WASHINGTON STATE HAS been ramping up their recruitment of Hawaii in recent years but Mike Leach appears to want to take it to a new level. A source tells CF.C Washington State has already offered a handful of players in The Islands, including a big hoss in the trenches.

Reeve Koehler (6-3, 298), an offensive guard prospect from Saint Louis High in Honolulu, already has three Pac-12 offers, including one from Mike Leach and Washington State.

Doris Sullivan, President and Director of Pacific Islands Athletic Alliance, told CF.C that Koehler, who had pancake blocks galore as a junior, is among the top overall prospects to come out of Hawaii this recruiting cycle. His talents, said Sullivan, also extend to off the field as well.

"He's a terrific kid and a good individual from a good family," Sullivan said. "Anyone's going to be lucky to get him."

Sullivan added that Koehler has quick feet.

"He's a hard worker," Sullivan said. "He did very well in the PIAA combine and he moves people around where he wants them to be, rather than pushing them."

According to Sullivan, for the last few years Koehler has been working with famed offensive line specialist Brian Derby. Derby runs an offensive line camp in Hawaii and has run camps in Oregon as well in recent years. Derby has coached several linemen to successful college careers, most notably Dominic Raiola who has started 156 straight games for the Detroit Lions.

KOEHLER ISN'T THE only Hawaiian prospect on the Cougar radar. Sullivan declined to detail those Leach has offered, preferring for that to come from the player and/or coach, but she did say Leach and staff have been in contact with several, and that offers have been extended. Scout.com lists DT Kamalei Correa as having been offered by WSU.

So how good is the 2013 Hawaii crop?

Sullivan said that the talent level on The Islands this upcoming season is tremendous -- the best she's seen in 10 years. She also expects WSU to be major players in this class because of Leach.

"I hope so because Hawaii can't take everyone so I think a lot of kids will look at WSU as a great alternative," Sullivan said. "If the University of Hawaii doesn't recruit them, then I think Washington State has a good chance of getting them.

"The state of Washington has always been a destination for (Hawaii) kids to go to school. Mike Leach has a good reputation from when he was at Texas Tech. He recruited some Hawaiian kids."

A POTENTIAL IMPEDIMENT in Leach's way in 2013 could be new UH coach Norm Chow. Sullivan tells CF.C that Chow is recruiting Hawaii hard and she expects more of the top tier talent to stay at home rather than leave, something that has not generally been the case.

Chow nearly stole incoming Cougar safety Taylor Taliulu at the eleventh hour before Signing Day, with Taliulu actually decommitting from WSU and pledging Hawaii. Over the course of the next 48 hours, however, Leach brought Taliulu back and he signed with Wazzu.

"I know they're hitting Hawaii hard and he's recruiting players as far as Florida," Sullivan said of Chow and UH. "His new coaches hit the ground running when they got in, and they went in and did a good job."

From Hawaii, WSU has brought in Taliulu this past class and has plucked Chester Sua, Jordan Pu'u-Robinson plus promising walk-on LB Cyrus Coen out of The Islands in recent years.

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