WSU Recruiting Notebook: Lots of happenings

TRYING TO READ the tea leaves on the recruitment of four-star DT Marcus Griffin has been interesting of late, to say the least. CF.C tracked down Griffin on Friday and he said he remains very interested in Washington State and they're among a trio of schools showing him the most recruiting love. We have that, the latest on DE/LB Patrick Choudja and more in this recruiting notebook...

Following a solid performance at the Semper Fi All-American Bowl, Marcus Griffin has added offers from Cincinnati and Mississippi State, adding to his previous offers from Washington State, Washington, Arizona, Cal, Colorado, Nevada and several others.

Three schools are showing him the most attention, though.

"Mississippi State, Cal and Washington State are definitely showing me the most interest right now," Griffin said. "I don't have any favorites or anything like that right now, though. I'm still kind of taking everything in stride, but those schools are coming after me hard."

THE WASHINGTON STATE coaches continue to put the full court press on Griffin, with head man Mike Leach and area recruiter Eric Russell continuously staying in close contact.

"I talk with them just about every day either on Facebook or on the phone," Griffin said. "I called Coach Russell on Wednesday and we didn't even really talk about football. I recently had a member of my family pass away and he was just asking me how I was doing with everything.

"With Coach Leach, he sends me messages through Facebook. He usually does that about four times a week. He's telling me how I'm still one of their top recruits they're going after and how they're a team on the rise."

The Cougs improvement this season is also something that Griffin is keeping in the back of his mind.

"Coach Leach said they want me back and that he wants me to go to bowl games with him in the future because they're going to continue to go to them," Griffin said. "They made some big changes from year one to year two and I think everyone can see they're on the rise. They just need to work on some of the little things and they'll be great."

GRIFFIN WILL TAKE an official visit to Cal next weekend, followed by Mississippi State on Jan. 31. With Cal, the Golden Bears made some coaching changes earlier this week, which included letting go of defensive line coach Barry Sacks. Griffin said it was tough to see his main recruiter go, but the Bears are still in it for him.

"I spoke with Coach Sonny Dykes and he let me know that I'm still the top recruit they are going after," Griffin said. "I'm still very interested in them right now and look forward to my visit."

The 6-3, 290-pounder, who took his first official visit to Washington State on Dec. 12, added that he will likely take another official visit on Jan. 24, but he hasn't decided where too yet.

"I'm leaving that date open in case another school offers or if I decide to take a trip to one of the schools that has offered me already like Cincinnati," Griffin said.

Griffin added that he recently called the recruiting coordinator at Washington, but has yet to hear from any of the recently hired UW coaches. The Bellevue High product said he will most likely make his final decision after his final visit.

ELSEWHERE ON THE RECRUITING FRONT, defensive end/outside linebacker prospect Patrick Choudja is set to take his official visit to Washington State next weekend. The 6-4, 230-pounder spoke with Russell, also his area recruiter, earlier this week to confirm those plans.

"Coach Russell told me he's very excited for me to get up there," Choudja said. "I'm excited too. He was telling me how WSU is a great Pac-12 school and it's a great environment up there."

Choudja said that his final four is Washington State, Boise State, Nevada and Fresno State. Being the only Pac-12 school, does WSU have an upper hand on the other three programs?

"It's a bonus, but there's big competition in college," Choudja said. "It doesn't matter what conference you are in because there's so much talent around.

"I tripped to Nevada already and I really enjoyed my visit out there. I've never been to Boise State and I've never been to Fresno State either. I'm looking forward to those trips."

In addition to WSU, FSU, BSU and Nevada, Choudja also holds offers from Hawaii, Colorado State, San Jose State and others. He at one time held an offer from Arizona State, but he said the Sun Devils have filled up at his position and have backed off recruiting him.

HERE'S ANOTHER defensive prospect to keep an eye on in the weeks before Signing Day for Washington State -- CB Tre Hartley out of Milpitas, Calif. The 6-0, 170-pounder is teammates with future Cougar RB Squally Canada and was offered by the Cougs back in the summer (though in trying to read the tea leaves it may be that offer is contingent on Hartley obtaining a higher qualifying test score.)

Hartley told CF.C on Thursday evening that he is in the process of scheduling an official visit to Pullman for later this month. Hartley held offers from Colorado, Colorado State, Houston and Nevada earlier this recruiting cycle, but said he hadn't heard from those schools in a while and wasn't sure if those programs are still interested.

REMEMBER THIS NAME? CF.C spoke briefly with WR Sebastian LaRue earlier today, who said he is transferring from Texas A&M.

LaRue, out of Santa Monica, Calif., was a 4-star prospect last year. He verballed to USC but then decommitted and was later down to Washington State and Texas A&M, ultimately committing to the Aggies shortly before signing day. However, LaRue is now back on the market and said he is looking to stay closer to home.

"I don't know at this point," LaRue said when asked of schools he's considering. "I'm just trying to get my release information done right now."

LaRue was also considered a potential cornerback coming out of high school, and that's the position USC liked him at. But it seems more likely he'll be a wide receiver where he ends up. LaRue redshirted this past season and would have to sit out 2014 due to NCAA transfer rules. He would then have 3-to-play-3 starting in 2015.

Texas A&M traditionally sets limits on which school players can transfer to in agreeing to give a player his release. Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin earlier this season, in talking about a backup QB's transfer, said they don't allow transfers to anyone in their conference or on their schedule.

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