Bulked up DT still has sights set on WSU

WITH MORE PRESSING NEEDS this recruiting class, the Cougars signed only one defensive tackle on LOI Day last week. That figures to change on Signing Day 2007. One with designs of wearing the crimson and gray is Joseph Townsend, a 2005 signee now enrolled in junior college. The San Jose product has gained 30 pounds since his prep turn, and has an eye on the fast track to gaining his AA degree with the full intention to land in Pullman next fall with three years of eligibility.

Townsend, who enrolled in January at Foothill College, has loaded up with 20 units this term.

"Classes are going real well," said Townsend. "All of them are transferable. I'm hoping to get my AA degree in a year and get up there to Washington State."

Townsend, who just turned 18 a short time ago, now checks in at 6-foot-4, 296 pounds, compared to weighing 265 pounds coming out of Valley Christian High.

He's spent the past year working out and working on technique with older brother Larry Townsend Jr., who played a mean defensive tackle at Nebraska in the mid 90s.

Townsend and WSU recruiting and d-line coach Mike Walker continue to stay in close contact. The last time Townsend called Walker, the pair made plans to get together the next time Walker is down in the area. Foothill College, in Los Altos Hills, is about 20 minutes out of San Jose.

"Coach Walk, he's been checking up on me," said Townsend.

TOWNSEND COULD HAVE enrolled at Marshall under Proposition 48 rules after failing to qualify but felt getting his AA degree was the better option.

(Prop 48, first implemented by the NCAA in 1986, allows a school to take a student-athlete who does not meet academic requirements, with the individual losing his first year of eligibility. If the player graduates in four years, he can the regain the lost year. Many leagues, including the Pac-10, no longer allow Prop 48 enrollees)

Leaning towards San Jose City or West Valley for his junior college stint, Townsend met with Foothill coach Marshall Sperbeck and after getting a feel for the Foothill program, campus and college life, it was a done deal.

Townsend said his on-field goals at Foothill include bettering the single season (19) and single game (6) marks for sacks.

"I told my head coach up front that's what I'm going after." said Townsend. "That's one of the things that will keep me motivated."

A quick d-lineman with a non-stop motor, Townsend clocked at a 4.9 in the 40, earning all-league honors on both sides of the ball at Valley Christian his senior campaign.

Joseph Townsend profile

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