Cougars going hard after 3-star, San Diego State running back verbal?

THREE-STAR running back prospect Chance Bell has put up some silly numbers thus far this season. Last week alone, the Burbank, Calif., product rushed for more than 300 yards and six touchdowns. Only a few days prior, he landed his offer from the Cougar staff. What did that offer mean for the San Diego State verbal?

It means Washington State has given the 5-10, 175-pounder something to think about.

The Cougars offered the Burroughs High product this past Wednesday. Wazzu was the first Pac-12 program to send a tender his way.

“They’ve been recruiting me since December of 2015,” Bell said. “I talked with coach Roy Manning last year and we kept in contact. They had a running back committed and they focused on him. I was getting other offers and committed to San Diego State. Then, their running back decommitted and things picked up again. That’s when they decided to pull the trigger.”

The running back Bell referenced is Cyrus Habibi-Likio, who backed off his WSU pledge about a week ago.

RELATEDCommon thread in WSU decommitments?

Manning made contact last year and Jim Mastro, the Cougs' running backs coach is of course involved, but Bell said first-year WSU assistant JaMarcus Shephard is the one running the point on his recruitment.

“He told me they were going to offer soon,” Bell said. “We just talked about how I’d be used in their offense. He knows I’m committed to San Diego State, but he still wants to recruit me. I was excited because it was my first Pac-12 offer.”

And since offering, WSU has made it clear they want the California native to head to the Palouse to play his college ball and join fellow Burbank product James Williams in the Cougar running back corps.

“(On Monday) I had seven coaches from Washington State send me handwritten letters,” Bell said. “After my game last week, some of them were sending me text messages as well. It was great.”

Bell was adamant, however, that he remains solid with San Diego State, to whom he verbally committed to back in late July.

The Cougs are definitely on his mind, though.

“I’m still strong with San Diego State,” Bell said. “It wouldn’t make sense for me to decommit right now. I’ve build strong relationships with them. I’d have to think more about it. 

"With WSU, they reached out after their running back decommitted and I’m yet to build strong relationships with them. They mentioned an official visit up there and I’m talking that over with my family. It’s not decided 100 percent yet, but we’re thinking about it.”

In four games this season, Bell has already rushed for 884 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns. In the Week Four win, he cranked out 340 yards on 21 carries with six touchdowns.

 

Here are some more recruiting notes for you:

• Last Thursday, Florida defensive tackle Lamonte McDougle backed off his verbal from WSU. Scout’s Corey Bender reported that McDougle would visit WSU this weekend for the Oregon contest. CF.C reached out to McDougle, but he said the visit plans are yet to be confirmed and he’s not sure if he’ll be making it out to Pullman. WSU last year enacted a recruiting strategy where they generally don't bring in official visitors during the season, unless a prospect can't make it up to WSU in December or January or if there's another unusually compelling reason.

• In case you missed it, defensive back Charles Watson also backed off his verbal Sunday night. Watson took an official visit to Oregon State this past Friday. 

• According to Scout's Greg Biggins, WSU DB verbal Tayari Venable, who also visited OSU, said he remains solid in his commitment to the Cougars, though he continues to plan other official visits. Venable told CF.C he’s planning on visiting WSU on Dec. 2, but he’s hoping to move that trip up so he can catch WSU play at Martin Stadium.


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