Portland LB tells CF.C he was shocked by new WSU offer

REMEMBER EARLIER THIS WEEK when CF.C broke down the Northwest recruiting by Washington State? Well, you can add one new player to the list of offered recruits. A 3-star linebacker out of Portland just landed a new tender from the Cougs and said it was a big one. At the same time, it couldn’t have come as a bigger surprise.

Wednesday turned out to be a big day for linebacker M.J. Cunningham.

A 6-3, 230-pound outside linebacker prospect, the Portland prospect out of Madison High had gotten word that WSU special teams coach and area recruiter Eric Mele would be on campus that day to meet with his prep coach.

Then, a few minutes after Mele left campus, the class of 2018 prospect got the news.

“They offered me at around 12 (Wednesday) as an outside ‘backer,” Cunningham said. “I was excited. It was a surprise offer, though. Coach Mele started following me on Twitter a few weeks ago and I haven’t really been speaking to him all that much. I knew he’d be stopping by my school to speak with my coach. Then, my coach texted me saying WSU gave me the full ride.”


Ranked a 3-star prospect by Scout.com, Cunningham holds offers from Oregon State, Utah, Hawaii and others.

He said that his relationship with the Cougars is still fairly new and that he doesn’t know a ton about the Cougar defense yet. At the same time, though, he added that he’s got one crimson memory which remains fresh in his mind.

“The last full game I was able to watch of WSU’s was the one against UCLA a couple of years back,” he said. “It was the one where WSU came back late in the fourth quarter and won with the late game-winner (Gabe Marks' touchdown catch). That was huge.”

So, with their relationship being so new, what led to Wednesday’s offer? Clearly Mele’s one-on-one talk with Cunningham’s coach helped seal the deal on the scholie being put on the table.

“Coach told me that WSU really likes my size a lot,” Cunningham said. “They say my film and loved it. Coach Mele texted me after he left to say congrats and that that he’d love for me to come out to WSU for a visit.”

Cunningham said he doesn’t have any unofficial visits for this summer planned at this time, but that could change in the coming weeks. He also said that he’s planning on taking all five of his official visits before making a decision.

Here are some more recruiting notes for you:

• Thursday turned out to be a busy day for WSU in sending out new offers. Things started off with the Cougars sending out a new tender to 3-star cornerback Shamaur McDowell, out of Florida. The 5-11, 180-pounder also holds offers from Minnesota, Purdue, Cincinnati, Central Florida and multiple others. 

• Shortly after, another Portland recruit landed a WSU schollie, with 4-star LB Eli'jah Winston also getting an offer from the Cougs. Winston is ranked the No. 15 outside ‘backer in the country by Scout and the No. 193 player overall.

• How about an offer in California? Per NW Ford Sports Performance’s Ryan Clary, WSU offered defensive end Mosiah Liu on Thursday night. WSU is offer No. 3 for the 6-3, 225-pound prospect.

• A prospect WSU fans are going to want to keep an eye on is 3-star WR Patrick Nunn. The Cougar coaches have been on him for quite some time. He took to Twitter last night to share just how close the two sides have become.


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