Crimson and Grayshirt trio arrive in January

THE NUMBER HAS moved up over the course of the year and it will likely remain in flux up to Signing Day but as of now, Washington State looks to sign 23-24 recruits when Feb. 1 rolls around. WSU is likely to oversign with some of that surplus enrolling the following January, becoming part of next year's recruiting class. Three holdovers from last year will do just that this January, enrolling at WSU in a little more than a month's time and gaining the advantage of participating in spring ball.

If this recruiting year is anything like years past, some players who sign will not qualify. Still others will likely be earmarked to delay enrollment -- a process known as grayshirting.

Washington State counts at least ten known members among their 2006 class with seven verbal commitments and three grayshirts -- three offensive linemen, two running backs, two wide receivers, one cornerback, one defensive tackle and one athlete who could play linebacker, tight end or safety.

CORNERBACKS ARE A position of emphasis this class, and tall corners like Nehemiah Mundy, (6-1, 170), are hard to come by.

"I cant wait to put on my Cougar gear," Mundy tells

The Culver City High graduate -- the same school the Cougs got Michael Bumpus from -- will have some rust to knock off when he arrives in Pullman, though voluntary off season workouts and spring ball will give him a head start on his fellow 2006 classmates.

Mundy, like Bumpus, was offered by the Trojans his senior year. He looked to be headed to USC but academic hurdles prevented him from signing with Southern Cal. He then earned a qualifying score after Signing Day.

"Nehemiah is very quick, he has very good speed," says Culver City coach Tom Salter. "He was being recruited by all the Pac-10 schools."

Mundy, last timed in the 40 at 4.46, had 80 tackles his senior year with 10 pass breakups and 2 interceptions.

PLAYING HIS SOPHOMORE SEASON at Culver City before transferring to University High was receiver Greg Walker. He's a big target at 6-foot-3 and 180 pounds.

"He's one of the best receivers I've coached and I've been doing this for 25 years," says University coach E.C. Robinson. "With all the talent that he has -- he has the speed, the hands, the quickness. And he has a knack of going up and coming down with the football."

"If he sticks to it and really works at it -- like he's been doing -- he can one day be playing on Sundays."

Walker, who ran the 40 in the 4.4 to 4.5 range in high school, missed most of his junior season after his transfer and flew under the radar of most schools. No matter, he capped his senior campaign averaging over 100 yards a game with 49 catches for 1355 yards and 8 TDs. He also racked up 60 tackles (44 solo) from his safety spot.

A CHISELED BRICKHOUSE is an apt description for Joey Eppele (6-7.5, 295), who will turn just 18 in December.

An outstanding athlete who can really move for his size, Eppele will also benefit from the early enrollment and spring session at Washington State.

"He is a raw player, but with enough time and patience the Cougars will have a legitimate Pac-10 left tackle," says his high school coach, Todd Bernett of Vancouver Prep.

A two-way all-conference performer on the gridiron, Eppele was also one of the premier junior hammer throwers and shot putters in all of Canada, placing first in the nation in his age group for the hammer throw.

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