More Texas talent in WSU's sights

WASHINGTON STATE'S already landed two Texans this recruiting class and they're looking for more. The valuable southern pipeline yielded three prime-time performers last recruiting class -- all of whom saw playing time as true freshmen. This weekend, Mister Alexander, a hard- hitting linebacker prospect, trips to Pullman while his teammate, defensive back Otis Johnson, is slated to travel to WSU later this month.

Both Alexander (6-3, 201) and Johnson hail from Houston's Eisenhower High, where head man Darryl Phipps says Alexander is about as highly sought as they come.

"He got offers from all the Big 12 schools, the majority of the Pac-10 schools, North Carolina, Houston -- he got over 40 offers," said Phipps.

He is scheduled to trip to Arkansas Jan. 20, followed by Arizona State on Jan. 27.

Alexander, who prefers to go out of state, says he favors Florida State but is waiting to see if he'll receive a Seminole visit and offer. The rest are tightly bunched, with Arkansas perhaps holding a slight edge headed into his trip to Pullman.

The graduation rate a school has will be among the key considerations for Alexander in making his decision. Distance, he said, is not a factor.

Schools like Alexander's physicality and a broad-shouldered frame that could add another 25-35 pounds over the course of his college career.

"Some guys will get that big hit every now and then," said Phipps. "But every time Mister touches you, he's blowing you up."

Alexander played only three games his senior season, having been injured much of his senior season with shoulder and knee injuries that have since healed up 100 percent. In his abbreviated two seasons as a starter, Alexander racked up 137 tackles (65 solo).

At the LSU camp this summer, he ran a 4.51 in the 40 yard dash, with a 38-inch vertical and a 10-foot-9 standing broad jump.

JOHNSON HAS A top three of WSU, K-State and UCF. He's scheduled to visit Washington State on Jan. 27. Before that, he takes officials to Central Florida this weekend followed by Kansas State on Jan. 20.

"First off, the (academics) are a big priority for me," said Johnson. "The computer engineering or business management program needs to be a stable, strong program. And the coaches-players relationship as well."

K-State holds a slight lead for the corner based on his familiarity with the school and his talks with the incoming Wildcats coaching staff.

Johnson had been a free safety until his senior season when the coaching staff wanted to try him out on the island. They knew he had the speed, but didn't know if if he had the hips to play corner. The verdict came in swiftly.

"He had an outstanding year," said Phipps. "And I told him, 'O, you're flying under the radar but academically you're going to be very attractive, just be patient.' He's a real coachable kid -- smart and sharp. And I'll tell you what, O can run."

Over his career, Johnson tallied 52 tackles (37 solo) with five pass break ups.

Johnson has a 3.4 core GPA and has achieved a qualifying score. He clocked a 4.41 in the 40 at LSU this summer, along with a 36-inch vertical, a 4.0 pro shuttle and a 10-foot-4 broad jump.

"The kid can really run the alley...He's a heck of a prospect," said Phipps.

Johnson is also a track standout, running the 100, 200, 4x100 and 4x200 meter relays.

Mister Alexander profile
Otis Johnson profile

Cougfan Top Stories