3-star LB Hotchkins high on WSU post visit

THE DAY BEFORE Washington State began fall camp in Lewiston, there was a big unofficial visitor out on the Palouse. Three-star Riverside City College linebacker A.J. Hotchkins, who holds 14 offers, was on the WSU campus Friday and had glowing things to say about his trip and the WSU area coach recruiting him. And he tells Cougfan.com he’ll be back in Pullman later this fall.

Washington State was offer No. 1 for Hotchkins about eight months ago and he had been wanting to visit the Pullman campus for quite some time.

Over the weekend, he indeed got to do just that.

“It was a really good visit,” Hotchkins (pictured above) told CF.C. “I really enjoyed the atmosphere of the school and meeting with all of the coaches.

“One of the things that stood out to me was how big of a college town it was. Everywhere you went, it was all about Washington State. There was Wazzu gear all over the place.”

THE COUGS' POINT MAN on Hotchkins is area recruiter and linebackers coach Ken Wilson. The third-year Cougar assistant has done one heck of a job recruiting him, Hotchkins said.

“I talk with Coach Wilson about every other day,” Hotchkins said. “It’s slowed down just a little this week because they started fall camp, but we’re always talking. He’s a cool guy and I like him as a coach.”

The 5-11, 235-pounder holds Pac-12 offers from WSU, Arizona, Cal, Utah and Colorado and also has a ride from Texas Tech, among others. But he said his relationship with Wilson stands out.

“Washington State was my first offer, so I’ve been talking with Coach Wilson for about eight months,” he said. “We probably have the strongest relationship I’ve developed with a coach in my recruitment.”

WHILE OUT ON the Palouse, Hotchkins said he got to catch up with former RCC teammate Jeremiah Mitchell. Mitchell enrolled at WSU in January and went through spring practices with the team.

“I got to hang out with Jeremiah after I took some of my tours and he had nothing but great things to say about WSU,” Hotchkins said. “This is his first fall camp out at Washington State and he’s really looking forward to it. He told me he gets along with all the players and coaches.”

Hotchkins, who lists no favorites at this time, said he’s planning on returning to WSU in the coming months.

“I want to take an official visit up there so I can check everything out during a game,” he said. “I’m hoping to do that in the fall. I definitely want to get back up.”

As for when he’ll make his decision?

“I’m just trying to take my official visits first and then I’ll probably narrow things down to a top five or top three,” Hotchkins said. “As of right now, I’m just focusing on my season with Riverside and winning some football games.”

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