In-state hoss to visit WSU this month

THEY GROW PRETTY large catfish over there in Iowa, where Issaquah, Wash., standout Cody Habben is visiting relatives right now and doing some late night fishing. Upon his return to the Evergreen State, he'll head to Washington State to take in a fall practice or two. With six offers under his belt, the three-star offensive lineman from Skyline High said he goes back and forth on whether he should make an early decision, or wait until later this fall.

It was well after midnight in Iowa. The rest of his family was fast asleep but Habben (6-5, 282) was still wide awake, hoping to hook some late night catfish.

"I'm just checking the fishing poles right now," said Habben. "We've got some chicken liver on the lines, trying to catch some catfish. This is about the time they start biting, right about now."

A coaching staff, facilities, academics, community support and location will all factor into his decision, but the outdoors could also play a role.

"I love to go fishing," said Habben. "I love to go hunting, too. Wazzu, I know they have good hunting and fishing...and Oregon State, their coach is always telling me about what good fishing they have down there."

Habben wouldn't be the first to choose Washington State in part because of the outdoor activities offered by the Palouse.

Anthony McClanahan, Butkus Award finalist and third-team All-America pick as a junior and senior, and who still holds the WSU record for primary tackles in a career and season with 287 and 91, respectively, chose WSU over offers from Texas, Oklahoma and USC in part because of the stellar hunting and fishing around Pullman.

HABBEN HOLDS OFFERS from Washington State, Oregon State, Colorado, Utah, Indiana and Idaho. He's also hearing from Washington, Cal and Nebraska, attending the Nebraska camp earlier this summer.

"It was good," said Habben of the NU camp. "I'm supposed to send them film after my second game."

He's starting to narrow his list and has a Top Four, although he remains open to everyone.

"Wazzu, Oregon State, Utah and Colorado, in no particular order," said Habben, who had a few comments on each of the schools.

Oregon State: "They have a great fan base, everybody gets behind them," he said. I don't know how many sold out games they've had in a row but that's pretty cool, I like that. And the coaches are awesome, too."

Utah: "I don't really know that much about them, but I know they won the Fiesta Bowl last year, so that's always a plus" he said. "And coach (Charlie) Dickey, he actually used to coach at UW, I knew his daughters and he was a nice guy.

Colorado: "They're pretty big time...pretty prestigious," he said. "I've seen pictures of their campus and it looks pretty cool."

Washington State: "Wazzu, I like where its located -- its not too far away from home and its not too close," he said. "All the coaches are awesome. Coach (Bill) Doba and coach (George) Yarno, they're really great people. And then coach (Timm) Rosenbach, who is (recruiting me) is just awesome. They're all awesome people over there. I like them a lot."

Habben said he's kept in touch most with Washington State and Oregon State this summer.

FALL PRACTICE BEGINS at Skyline High on August 17, with Habben planning on taking in some of the fall camp at Washington State before then. He hasn't set up any official visits but there's one school he's earmarked for an official visit, with the remainder to be determined.

"I know I want to set one up with Wazzu," he said.

Habben said he goes back and forth on whether he wants to make an early decision.

"Sometimes I want to get it over with and sometimes I want to wait it out," he said. "I don't know, I could be spontaneous but I'd probably like to take a couple visits first before making my decision."

Cody Habben

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