New Hire for Huskies meets with Vatuvei

One of the top defensive line prospects still on Washington's list got a visitor earlier this week and Patterson (Ca.) DL Pio Vatuvei said he came away impressed with new Husky defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox...

"Coach Wilcox came and had an in-home with me and my family and it was really great," Vatuvei told "He talked about why he left Tennessee to come to Washington and about the system they will be running there."

So, why did Wilcox end up coming to Washington?

"He told me that when coach (Steve) Sarkisian called him, he was asking around and people said 'Sark is the guy' and that he really wanted to coach with him and when the opportunity came up, he had to take it," Vatuvei noted.

And as far as how he fits in Washington's new defensive scheme?

"Coach Wilcox said they want to use me as a five-technique (a defensive end in a 3-4)," Vatuvei said. "He said they will use a lot of multiple-fronts and use different formations and stuff, but they like me as a DE or as a three-technique (pass-rushing defensive tackle) depending on what they are doing in a particular call."

Vatuvei committed to USC back in August and called the offer from the Trojans his "dream offer", but since then he's taken visits to Washington and California and he plans visits to Utah as well as USC before he makes his final decision.

"I'm still committed to USC, but I'm keeping an open mind about it all," Vatuvei said. "Washington is still one of my favorites. I liked coach (Nick) Holt, but coach (Johnny) Nansen is still there and so is coach Sark and they went to a bowl game for the second-straight year and they are rising still.

"With the new defensive staff in there, they should improve a lot and it would be fun to be part of that."

Vatuvei plans to take his visits to Utah (Jan. 13th) and USC (Jan. 20th) and then will sit down with his family to make the decision.

"It'll come down to where I see myself getting better as a player and a person," Vatuvei said. "Each of my favorites have their positives and minuses, but each one would be a great place to be, so I just have to figure out where I fit in best and then I will know where I need to sign."

We will continue to check in with Vatuvei in the coming weeks as he gets closer to making a decision.

Pio Vatuvei Scout Profile Top Stories