COMMIT: Cougs land 2010 class DE/DT

JUCO DE/DT STEVEN HOFFART didn't appear to be eligible until 2011. So when Letter of Intent Day rolled around this past February, he didn't have much to do. But then it turned out he was in fact eligible, and he had 3-to-play-3, and he was on pace to get his AA anyway this spring. Earlier this week, he became a Coug and will start classes at WSU next month. CF.C talks to the newest Cougar..

The WSU coaching staff tipped the balance when Steven Hoffart was in Pullman last month.

"It was their energy. They really believe the program is turning around. I was unsure, 'Do I want to do this? Because I don't want to go to the Pac-10 and then lose.' But they really believe, and I felt the energy and saw it. You can just tell something good is going on at Washington State," said Hoffart.

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A year ago when Hoffart arrived at Butte, he was around 230-240 pounds. He bulked up, and last season, played at 6-3.5, 270. As a redshirt freshman at Butte, official stats credit him with 31 tackles in 10 games played -- with 13.5 tackles for loss and 11 of which were sacks. He also had the QB hurries, a pass break-up, forced fumble and fumble recovery.

He took in the spring game at Wazzu last month.

"It just felt like home," said Hoffart of Washington State. "I visited Boston College and it's a little different back there. Washington State was beautiful, really nice.

"I played with (Brandon Rankin) here at Butte and I love that guy, he's a really good guy. When I went out to Washington State we ate dinner and he talked about how much he loved it there and thought I would love it there too," said Hoffart.

LOOK FOR HOFFART, AT 270 pounds and still growing, to play up and down the line this season for the Cougs.

"The thing that they're happy about is that I can play the 1-(technique), the 3-(technique), and the 5-(technique). They just want to get me in the rotation and then we'll figure that out," said Hoffart.

Hoffart, who said the WSU staff liked his "get-off and great motor", could be around 285-290 pounds by the time he's done growing and finishes his career at Washington State.

"That's just one thing that's changing constantly. I knew I was going to get a little bit bigger but it just keeps on going. I'm 6-4 now," he said.

HOFFART WAS A full qualifier out of high school but didn't realize it. Nor did the schools recruiting him -- his recruitment only really picked up steam about 2 1/2 months ago, when WSU came onto the scene.

Once he filed the proper paperwork, Hoffart said schools like Ohio State began to inquire. But WSU was the one recruiting him hardest.

"All of a sudden after I sent in those test scores, I started getting a lot more calls and a lot more people interested. But the thing that's funny about that, I'll have my AA (this month). So I was going to be a qualifier no matter what," said Hoffart.

Hoffart said he'll arrive at WSU sometime around June 1 and start summer classes at WSU the following week in advance of fall camp.

HE PREPPED AT Davis High just outside of Sacramento, the same school that produced head man Paul Wulff, who went on to become a four year starting center for Washington State.

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