T-minus 19 for Houston

ANTHONY HOUSTON, one of the blue chippers in the incoming WSU rookie class and eager to begin his college career at Washington State, heads to Pullman in just a few short weeks. Rated among the nation's Top 50 prep receivers, the 6-4, 200-pound gamebreaker talks about taking care of business and getting mentally ready to hit the field for his first fall camp with the Cougs.

Houston leaves the San Diego area for the Palouse on August 1.

"I took care of the schoolwork and all that needed to be done," Houston said this week. "I graduated on time and without any problems, it was just the SAT. It took me a couple times but I made it. I passed my SAT and I'm on my way up there."

Houston signed with Washington State over a final four of offering schools that included Miami, Oregon State and Nebraska. He held more than a dozen offers all told.

"Me and coach (George) Yarno have been talking back and forth (this offseason), stuff that I need to do and how prepared I need to be coming into Washington State," said Houston. "I'm basically just getting mentally ready."

Houston also wanted to thank everyone for their support to help get him to this point, entering his first season of playing football with the Cougs.

"I felt at home with Washington State, and it's close to home too," said Houston.

Mission Bay was decidedly a running team in 2005, going 3-to-1 on runs to passes. That afforded Houston the opportunity to show off his blocking skills, something key to a receiver's game at the college level.

And there were also the more traditional skills that caused schools to come running, including an innate ability to make the difficult catch.

With a total of only 130 pass attempts on the year all told, Houston had 28 receptions for 458 yards and four TDs, seven rushes for 66 more, plus seven kickoff returns for 144 yards. Defensively, he racked up 43 tackles with an interception.

Speaking to his athleticism, Miami offered the 6-foot-4 Houston as a cornerback.

The San Diego Hall of Champions, comprised of area coaches, selected Houston first team all league as a senior. He was also named to the Tacoma News Tribune's Western 100 and received Honorable mention "Best in the West" honors by the Long Beach Press-Telegram.

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