ROUNDUP: What's next in Recruiting?

ALTHOUGH A QUINTET of future Cougars made their crimson intentions known in the days leading up to Christmas, Washington State isn't done when it comes to the 2009 class. Indeed, there's plenty more Cougar recruiting news expected between now and the first Wednesday in February when Letters of Intent are signed.

Here's how the numbers break down as the end of the calendar year approaches: Washington State has 17 known verbal commitments as of Dec. 30, with 16 of them prepsters and one a JC transfer.

The commit list includes six of the top 11 rated prospects in the state of Washington. Other than WSU, no other school has more than one of top prospects from the state.

The Cougars are expected to put a full load of 25 on scholarship. One possible scenario to 25 could see WSU sign around 17-19 high schoolers, place 3 or 4 from the current roster on scholarship, and then have another 4 to 5 coming in as January enrollees.

The Cougs are also expected to oversign -- a process known as grayshirting, where a recruit signs his Letter of Intent in February but delays enrollment until the following January, thereby, in effect, becoming part of the next year's recruiting class.

Expected to enroll at WSU this January are three who signed in the '08 class: DT Josh Luapo, OG Tim Hodgdon and OT Alex Reitnouer, plus JC transfer tight end Peter Tuitupou.

Wulff said in a CF.C article earlier this month that while needs exist across the board, the two top areas he's looking at are defensive line and wide receiver.

Since then, at defensive tackle, Luapo told CF.C he's finished up his coursework on his AA and will arrive in January. While Luapo and prep verbal commit Justin Clayton make for two d-tackles in the class, the Cougs continue to look strongly at guys like Branden Warner and Latu Heimuli. Heimuli, a 6-4, 305-pounder out of Utah, has been virtually impossible to reach this recruiting season with nearly all of the news on him coming through his prep coaches. The latest word is he's deciding between Washington State, Florida, Arizona, Nebraska and Colorado and has not publicly declared a favorite. Warner (6-3, 295) is in Georgia and before the holiday break ends and he travels back to California in January, he tells CF.C he'll be getting an in-home visit from WSU, look for a CF.C article soon.

At defensive end, the Cougars remain in the mix for Kevin Greene, who has offers from WSU, USC and others. Greene reportedly has narrowed his choices to three -- WSU, USC and ASU. Greene has USC in front and will trip to L.A. as well as Tempe in January. The Cougs also have recently landed some TE/DE type bodies, such as Spokane's Travis Long who looks to come to WSU as a defensive end.

At wide receiver, Washington State has Gino Simone, the top rated recruit in the state of Washington regardless of position, now firmly in the fold.

The numbers at the receiver spot, however, would suggest the Cougs are on the prowl for more. Wulff talked about possibly having as many as five mid-year enrollees when classes start back up at WSU in mid-January so be surprised if some wide receiver names suddenly leap onto the radar in the coming weeks.

And while the Cougs have needs at receiver and d-line, and the class looks to be getting full, don't assume WSU is done at the other positions.

Among those WSU has in their sights include Desmond Trufant, the playmaking cornerback out of Tacoma's Wilson High with some obviously strong crimson bloodlines.

What it boils down to is that things can and do remain in flux right up until Letter of Intent Day, and there will probably be a few more twists, turns and surprises yet to come.

It also means that Washington State, while they've thus far pulled in a highly rated class with their known verbals to date, including landing the best the state of Washington has to offer, aren't done yet. Not by a long shot.


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