Cougars host California duo

WITH TWO OFFICIAL visit weekends remaining before Letters of Intent are inked on Feb. 1, Washington State is looking to add the final pieces to the 2006 recruiting class puzzle. This weekend, Bill Doba and staff play host to a pair of California playmakers -- Toby Turpin out of Los Alamitos and Reseda's Cornorris Atkins.

Atkins (6-3, 205) trips to the Palouse this weekend as an athletic prospect with a rare combination of size and speed, running a 40 yard dash in a time of 4.56.

His recruitment has been heated over the past month, with Washington State, Washington, Arizona, Arizona State, Oregon State, UCLA and Nevada talking to Atkins but schools have held off on offering a full ride until seeing his academic progress.

"I still have my part of the bargain to hold up academically," said Atkins. "Most of the schools are waiting for my report card to come out. And I'm doing good...As far as my situation, I'm making up the grades I got in my 9th and 10th grade years. I'm also doing on-line classes and as far my end of the bargain, its being done.

"I know that's hard for me to tell coaches with me not being in a position to be able to show them that on paper yet."

Washington State, Washington, Utah State and Nevada have all come by the Atkins home for in-home visits in the past few weeks.

WHERE ATKINS LINES up on the field next year depends on the school, with receiver, safety and linebacker all possibilities. Atkins said his preference is to play receiver.

Most important to the Cleveland High standout, though, is a school's academics.

"I'm not as concerned with what schools can offer me athletically -- I'm more concerned with what they have in the classrooms and academically," said Atkins.

Heading into his Pullman trip, Utah State is his frontrunner -- they're his one offer and the only school he's tripped to thus far.

"They're saying they see me not only as an athlete but as a student," said Atkins. "Some schools have said they want me more for insurance, which I can live with, but I want to go to a school where they want me for me."

Atkins logged 34 tackles this past season with two interceptions while scoring 12 TDs, gaining 320 yards on 25 receptions and adding 112 ground yards on 21 carries.

WASHINGTON STATE LIKES Turpin (6-4.5, 250) at defensive tackle, as does Arizona State. Washington, Colorado and Boise State all like him at defensive end, the position Turpin said he's most comfortable at. And the Huskies are talking to the Los Al High masher about playing a new position, one he's never played before, tight end.

Turpin remains open but said his last visit, to Colorado, was far and away his favorite so far and that he was close to committing this past week to former Boise State and new Buffs coach Dan Hawkins. However, he ultimately decided to take the scheduled trip to WSU this weekend.

Turpin's tripped to CU, Washington and Boise State, with ASU scheduled Jan. 27 after this weekend's sojourn to the Palouse.

Turpin tallied six sacks among his 58 first-hit tackles, plus five pass breakups and two interceptions.

His league's Defensive Lineman of the Year and first team all-county selection, Turpin's strength numbers include a 280-pound power clean with a 350 on the bench. At the combine last spring, he clocked a 5.1 in the 40 but bettered that at UCLA's junior day with a 4.9.

Turpin also excels in the classroom, securing a 1400 test score on the SAT.

Toby Turpin profile
Cornorris Atkins profile

This is the second to last weekend for official visits before Signing Day.

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