Q&A - Elijah Qualls

Dawgman.com spoke Sunday with Elijah Qualls, a 6-foot-2, 280-pound athlete from Casa Grande High School in Petaluma, Calif., and Qualls is as committed to the Washington Huskies more than ever. Does that mean he's still interested in checking out other schools?

On getting a chance to meet up with guys like Caleb Tucker and Sean Harlow during the USC game - "I hung out with them there and I text them every once in a while to see how they are doing."

If the game day experience matched his expectations - "That and more. The fans out there - it was crazy. They showed me love. It was amazing."

On if he got a chance to check out Husky Stadium during his unofficial visit - "We saw it from a distance. Man, I can wait until it's done."

On his season at Casa Grande - "Our team is doing pretty good. Our passing game is killing it, and defense, teams are keying on me which opens up a lot of things for our linebackers and other d-linemen. We're 6-2 and probably one of those losses we shouldn't have had. We're definitely going to make the playoffs and even though we have two tough games coming up I think we'll do it."

On how he's doing at running back - "I probably have about 600 rushing yards right now."

On if he has a preference in college - offense or defense? - "I like 'em both, but when I go up to Washington I'm definitely playing on the d-line for the most part. Especially after watching the SC game, I feel like I can definitely be a big help in there. But I've told the running backs coach that when I get up there I definitely want to see some of the backfield. I'm not saying that selfishly; I feel like I can help punch it in any time we get into the red zone."

On how often he keeps in contact with the UW coaches - "I talk to Tosh and Sark a lot. I talk to them very often, actually. I talk to some of the other coaches sometimes, like (Justin) Wilcox and maybe the running backs coach every once in a while. We don't talk about football much. They are just checking in on how I'm doing and how my season is doing and how they can't wait for me to get up there."

On if he's still recruiting guys to UW right now - "Not much. I'm just trying to make it through high school right now. Maybe a little more after the season ends I'll start getting into it a little more, but right now I'm putting all my focus into my team and my season.

"As for right now after the (SC) trip there's actually two guys - there's (Danny) Mattingly, who I think would be a great contributor to the team, and there's another linebacker up there (Myles Jack). I want to see what I can get out of both those guys, because both of them could definitely contribute on the defensive side."

On if UW fans should be worried if he wants to take official visits to other schools - "Not at all. Honestly my trips are more like to get the experience. A lot of these places…I'll probably never even go there again. And places like Arizona, I didn't get much of a trip there so I definitely still want to give it a chance out of fairness. But for me it's more of an experience thing."

On what the UW coaches think about him possibly taking official visits to other schools - "They told me before they aren't really mindful of it. But I definitely will check in with them before I take a visit to make sure - but I don't think they really mind. They know that I'm a Dawg."

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