Final Two, No wait, Three, for Poly corner

TOUTED LONG BEACH POLY cornerback Vincent Joseph, thought to have narrowed his choice to Oregon or USC, says there's another suitor back in the hunt. Way back in the hunt. Following an in-home visit last week by Washington State assistant coach Kelly Skipper, Joseph told Monday that the Cougars are now also one of his finalists.

Vincent had all but ruled Washington State and everyone else save for USC following his visit to Eugene last month, but Skipper was the first to make an in-home visit with Vincent and his family last week.

"Washington State made a huge impression on me on the in-home," said Vincent. "And my mother likes Washington State a whole lot."

Vincent said he still favors Oregon and Southern Cal, but that WSU is now definitely back in the race.

"Basically, it's Oregon and Washington State right now," said Vincent, who later also mentioned Southern Cal.

VINCENT SAID HIS understanding is there's only one corner committed to Oregon right now. The main thing Vincent says that has WSU slightly behind in his and his family's mind is that Pullman is further away from home than Eugene.

"It's a little isolated," said Vincent. "And my mom asked, 'Are you going to like it out there?', but everything else is fine. And the Oregon coaches came around after Washington State and they made a good impression too.

"It's basically between Oregon and Washington State. I think Oregon might be a little (higher up)...but Washington State's not too far behind now. I'm always going to keep Washington State in mind."

BOTH OREGON AND Washington State have a favorable depth chart situation according to Vincent. He said Oregon has told him they have only one redshirt freshman, and a junior who's injured and might not be able to play next season, and then the rest are true freshmen.

"And that's it, they lose all their corners," says Vincent. "Everyone else is true freshmen. They also run a dime and nickel so they're going to need corners...They've shown me their depth chart and it's like real white -- senior, senior, senior; senior behind senior behind senior."

DECISION DAY for Vincent has been set -- coinciding with the Cali-Florida Bowl on Dec. 31. At that time, he'll tell the coaches involved at all the schools. However, he does not plan on making the announcement public until Signing Day (Feb. 1). Vincent said he and Terrence Austin are scheduled to announce on ESPN.

Southern Cal has long been a Vincent favorite. They certainly remain there, but the Trojans still have not decided if they're going to offer.

"I've been calling Jethro (Franklin, USC assistant) and saying, 'Man, help me out there,' and they're saying they're going to do it but they haven't yet," said Vincent. "But I'm still optimistic on them."

AFTER THE IN-HOME last week, Vincent said the Skipper and Ken Greene stopped by Poly Monday to see him. And then the coaches at Washington also dropped by.

"Washington State came by (Monday), and coach Skip brought down the DBs coach," said Vincent. "And then Washington came down to see me too, made a surprise visit. So they kind of ran into each other. Washington State got there first, Washington got there about thirty minutes later and were in the waiting room.

"I finished up with Washington State and when Washington State walked out, you could see they all knew each other. And then I talked to Washington for a little bit, and that was pretty cool."

Vincent Joseph profile profile

IN OTHER RECRUITING news, Jameel Dowling, a 6-foot-3, 190-pounder from Butte (Calif.) College, verbally committed this week to Oregon. WSU had expressed keen interest but had yet to make him an offer.

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