2012 Spotlight: Keivarae Russell

It's been a while since the state of Washington has produced a top-caliber running back, but Mariner (Everett) junior tailback Keivarae Russell might just be the best back to come from the Evergreen State since Jonathan Stewart was running wild for Timberline at the turn of the century…

Before Friday night's game against Edmonds-Woodway, Russell had put up 632 yards and 11 touchdowns in the first three games and in the fourth contest he posted 266 yards and two more touchdowns in Mariner's 35-21 win.

"This feels good, real good," Russell told Dawgman.com about the win. "We came in focused on winning and continuing our season and playing as well as we can and this is just the next step in getting to the playoffs and then anything can happen."

Russell grew up in the Puget Sound region and has been watching the Huskies for quite some time and said they are a school he's very interested in, but at this point it's a school in California that he likes the most.

"Right now, I'd say Cal is my favorite," Russell said. "I have a friend's cousin who goes there and they said it's a great atmosphere and a great school to go to.

"I really like the coaches there and their overall program is really good. It's still really early for me so I'm not really thinking about when I'll make a decision plus I only have two offers right now, so I still need to get offers from other schools before I can really start to decide on a timeline or anything like that."

Those two offers are from Washington State who extended a full-ride last winter after Russell had put up 1,232 yards during his sophomore season and Wyoming.

"They offered me a while ago and it was real flattering," Russell said. "I'm open to everyone and I'll look at any school that offers me.

"I went to Washington's game against Nebraska last week and it was a tough game for them, but it showed me how much stronger I need to get because I'm only about 175 pounds right now.

"I need to get bigger in my upper-body so I can take those blows because those backs were taking some hits."

Other schools who are sending letters nearly every day include Alabama, LSU, Notre Dame, Oklahoma and the rest of the Pac 10 as well.

In addition to his skills on the gridiron, Russell is also a contributor on the basketball court and also posted an 11.3 100 meters in his first year of track.

"I run about a 4.5 or so, but last year I ran an 11.3 100 and I didn't really know how to run it," Russell said. "I wasn't real relaxed at all and my coaches think that the more I get use to that, I'll have a chance to really improve."

Besides being a great three-sport athlete, Russell is also an outstanding student posting a 3.78 GPA and is the Junior Class President as well.

"I feel like I'm a leader on the field out here and in the classroom," Russell said. "I expect a lot out of myself and I took being class president as another challenge for me."

Next weekend, Russell and his Mariner teammates will take on Cascade on the road.

Keivarae Russell Scout Profile

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