Junior to watch - Walter Winter

Three years ago, we saw Loren Winter at the now defunct Reebok camp at Juanita High School. He's now the starting center at Western Washington as a redshirt freshman. Little did we know at the time that his little brother would be coming along and also trying to earn a scholarship to play college football. Well, Walter Winter isn't little anymore. And in fact, the 6-5, 235-pound linebacker/tight end is receiving a lot more attention than his brother did as a high school junior.

"I think my greatest attribute is that I go 100 percent on every play," Walter told Dawgman.com. "I like to hit. I think I'm a good hitter. I can pursue very well from side to side and I can also get out there and cover. I love the game and I work hard."

Winter claims a 4.6 40, 31.5-inch vertical jump, 300-pound bench 500-pound squat and a 255-pound power clean. He led the KingCo 4A with 73 solos and 23 assisted tackles, as well as 5 forced fumbles. For his efforts he earned First team all-league honors. Walt was a captain as a junior and rececently renamed to that position for his upcoming senior year.

"I also earned the 'Rebel Award'," Winter said. "It goes out to the hardest worker. The coaches give it out."

On top of football, Walter also did track with an unusual combination of the 100 (11.9), shot (45') and discus (120'). Only a top athlete would be able to attempt sprints and field events, but Winter appears to have that type of athleticism.

"With my height I can kind of see defensive end or tight end being the likeliest places I'll play," he said. "But most likely now outside linebacker, because I was talking to Tim Hundley at U-Dub. (during junior day). I was standing out from the other linebackers there because I was so tall but he said, 'No, you've got to be a linebacker', so I said, 'Cool.'"

What else did Walt do during last Saturday's junior day festivities? "It was awesome," he said. "We got there and went to practice. (Rick) Neuheisel immediately came up to me and talked to me, shook hands. It was just small talk, but he impressed me as to how personable he was. Looking back on it, it felt like I was constantly talking to a coach, so they really impressed me with the personal attention that I had. I like the coaches a lot. I think Neuheisel is a cool guy.

"They have sweet facilities and it's a big school. It's close. We clocked it and it's only 17 miles from home, so that's pretty sweet. It's away from my parents, but not too far away."

Watching practice on Saturday got Winter a little more than amped. "I was ready to suit up," he said. "I was getting excited about spring ball coming up. I think I could play with them."

Winter has already visited Oregon's junior day. "I like the town," he said. "When I was down there they really sold me. They sold me on how they'll help me get through college and how they'll make me graduate whether I want to or not. That's a good thing for me. They really sold me on the academics. And they have tons of new facilities. It's definitely a college town.

"I also got invited to come out to Notre Dame, but they aren't paying for it because it's an unofficial visit, so I probably won't go. It's for their junior day. I also get letters from Oklahoma, Oregon State, Washington State, and Nebraska."

While Walt doesn't have any offers yet, he feels pretty confident one should be coming soon. "Well, he (Rick Neuheisel) put his hands about a half-inch apart, and said, 'Walt, this is how close I am to offering you a scholarship,' so he made me feel really good about my chances of getting one. But he hasn't offered yet."

And visit plans for this fall? "Well, I've got tickets to go to Washington's games, so I'll be going to those," Winter said. "And I'm sure I'll go on an official visit too. Also Oregon, most likely and probably Notre Dame."

Walter Winter Scout Profile

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