BREAKING: Cali record-setter goes crimson

CALIFORNIA IS California, but it can't compete with Washington State's charms. Those are the sentiments expressed by Mike Leach's newest verbal commitment – a record setter who blew up the Northern California League as a junior in 2011.

Three-star running back prospect Olito Thompson, who piled up a ridiculous 3,488 ground yards with 34 touchdowns this past season and held three Pac-12 offers, has gone crimson.

"I committed to Washington State," the 5-10, 210-pounder tells CF.C.

Out of Concord, Calif., Thompson fell in love with the Palouse this weekend while on his unofficial visit.

"It's fresh air," said Thompson in a sentence that held multiple meanings. "It's just a peaceful, friendly environment. It's much more of a family environment compared to a lot of places… they treated me just like family here from the moment I arrived."

Thompson's 3,488 hashes as a junior set a NorCal record for single season rushing.

But Thompson will be doing more at WSU beyond carrying the pigskin.

He loves blocking, for example. And he said he and WSU have talked in depth this recruiting season about him catching the ball out of the backfield, too.

In short, an all-around back who should fit in very nicely in Leach's Air Raid offense.

THOMPSON SAID true freshman linebacker Jeremiah Allison and Cougar running backs coach Jim Mastro were among the keys to his decision. Allison is from Los Angeles, and hearing Allison's take having been in Pullman since June was big.

"Jeremiah showed me the ropes… And then Coach Mastro…he talked about the things we can do together," said Thompson.

Thompson was the East Bay Football Player of the Year as a junior, as well as first team All-Metro, All-DVAL and FOXSportsNext All-California. He clocked a 4.5 in the 40 earlier this summer.

Washington State now has a dozen known verbal commitments in the 2013 class. You can find the list HERE.

Olito Thompson profile

Click here for Thompson's junior highlight reels

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