MORE BREAKING NEWS: Cougs land California WR

UPDATED -- WASHINGTON STATE's second known verbal commitment from the weekend's big official visit weekend -- and 12th known overall -- is a wide receiver with, says, deceptive speed and great hands. He told WSU head man Paul Wulff on Monday morning he was pledging crimson. "It was just the people there, they're so close -- everybody there is just family," said the future Cougar.

"I committed this morning, actually," said Kevin Norrell, a 5-9.5, 183-pounder with 4.51 speed out of Long Beach Polytechnic. "Everybody there just really wants to see their Cougars win.

Norrell was one of a close trio of prepsters who tripped together to Washington State this weekend. Brian Baucham and Norrell, as the weekend progressed, started talking about committing together.

Headed down to breakfast Monday morning, when the elevator door opened, the first person Norrell saw was Wulff.

"I just asked him, 'Where are the scholarship papers that I'll need to sign?' Coach Wulff just started smiling, and he patted me on the back and said, 'I'm so happy you've made this decision.' He was really excited."

RIGHT AFTER NORRELL AND BAUCHAM verballed, so too did Tyree Toomer.

"Tyree and Brian, they really had a big influence on my decision," said Norrell.

NORRELL's CONSISTENCY could well pay dividends in the Pac-10 with WSU receviers coach Mike Levenseller as his mentor. Levy is highly regarded in coaching circles as a master technician.

"What he lacks in the ideal size, he makes up for with his crisp route running, excellent hands and concentration," says Brandon Huffman, West Analyst.  "He can make the tough catch and he was the most consistent receiver for Poly on their CIF title team.

  "He's a coachable kid and I can see him being a very good slot receiver in college.  A good get for the Cougs, and it never hurts to get a prospect from the always fertile Poly program.

NORRELL SAID that over the weekend, the Cougar coaches' honesty also made a decided difference.

"I loved the campus. And especially what helped me (decide) were the coaches. The coaches were really down to earth, really nice, and still telling me what I need to do to play in the Pac-10 -- and I really took that into account when making my decision."

The eardrum-busting anthem of crimson pride going on for two straight hours Sunday night at the Cougar hoops game didn't hurt either.

"That basketball game was so hyped," said Norrell of WSU's 69-60 win over Oregon. "All the Washington State fans, they stayed faithful even when Washington State was down, they still stayed with their team. And they pulled it out."

NORRELL RELATED that the Cougar coaches liked his versatility in potentially making big plays, and in a variety of ways, at receiver.

"What they told me was they wanted...athletic receivers who can play inside, outside...and they liked my speed. And they said they liked my (yards) after the catch," said Norrell.

On the YAC, does that in part come about because Norrell has a little shake and shimmy to his game?

"Oh yeah, I got a little bit of that," he said.

NORRELL SAID HIS main goal when he gets to WSU is to help restore the type of winning tradition the Cougs enjoyed earlier this decade, when WSU put together three straight 10-win seasons from 2001-2003, the first time that had been done in the Pac-10 since the 1930s.

"I hope to bring a lot of success to the Cougs...and go back to some bowl games. It's going to be a nice couple years coming up here," said Norrell.

Kevin Norrell profile

Cougfan Top Stories