Bjornstad's official visit to WSU outstanding

THE WASHINGTON STATE Cougars have officially entered the hurry-up-and-wait mode for Steven Bjornstad. David Long, Bjornstad's high school coach, said Friday the 6-foot-10 power forward's official visit to Pullman was outstanding, and that a final decision on where to play his college ball is coming shortly.

Long described Bjornstad's official campus visit to WSU as "the best visit" he's had to date.

Long said Bjornstad is tentatively set to make an unofficial visit to Portland over the weekend, but Long said he believes the tight-lipped Bjornstad remains set on attending WSU or Saint Mary's. Long said he expects Bjornstad to make a decision next week.

"Personally, I hope he goes to Washington State," Long said. "But he's not my son."

Long, a former Idaho player, called the WSU coaching staff "exceptional" and said Cougar coaches "did a heck of a job laying out the program" for Bjornstad.

Bjornstad, a two-time Washington Class 3A All-State player at Columbia River in Vancouver, signed a letter of intent with Nevada last year when the Cougars balked at offering a scholarship. WSU rejoined the recruiting frenzy for Bjornstad when he asked for and received his release from Nevada after the school fired its coaching staff.

Bjornstad averaged 15.6 points, 10.5 rebounds and four blocked shots per game last season.

Long said the lean, 230-pound Bjornstad has "enormous" potential because he continues to gain weight and strength and has focused all his sports time on basketball the past three years. As a freshman, he also was a top golfer for Columbia River.

"He's not going to go in and tear it up his first year in the Pac-10," Long said, "but he's going to contribute."

If he comes to WSU, Bjornstad will join a recruiting class that already includes Xavier Thames, Anthony Brown, Brock Motum and Reggie Moore. Bjornstad also would give WSU an unprecedented number of in-state players in the same class. Brown is from Spokane and Moore is from Seattle.

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