Dublanko Visits UW

Joel Dublanko never misses a chance to eat at his favorite restaurant - Red Robin. So while Dublanko and his family were in Seattle this weekend, the 6-foot-3, 235-pound big athlete from Aberdeen had some work to do. But Red Robin wasn't far from his mind.

Dublanko checked out Washington's third spring practice and he had a chance to also watch Washington's basketball team finish out their Pac-12 season during Senior Day. He's been to UW Hoops before, but he declined. Red Robin was calling his name.

"I was hungry," he said Sunday with a big laugh.

Dawgman.com caught up with Dublanko Sunday at a Barton Football Elite workout, one that Dublanko regularly attends. "Next weekend I'm going to Vegas for the (Pylon) 7-on-7 Tournament," he said when asked about his future visit and camp schedule. "I'm not sure what I've got going on the weekend after that. We're still working on a camp schedule, but I think we're going to a UCLA practice, an Arizona practice, U-Dub - their camp, Oregon, their camp, Stanford, their camp, Georgia, their camp - that's the main ones and we're going to fill it in with a couple more."

It's a busy time for Dublanko, but he is already used to the grind. Ever since Montana offered him last year, the Aberdeen star has been on the recruiting radar as a top athlete to watch for the 2016 class.

"When I was at UCLA this past summer Jim Mora said he liked my length, so maybe somewhere outside - kind of like an Anthony Barr-type," he said when asked about where colleges are recruiting him position-wise. "When I was at Stanford last weekend they said that I was a little bigger and taller than the inside linebackers and in-between the outside and inside (linebackers), so they were thinking maybe hybrid. All the other schools have been inside linebacker."

Talk turned back to his Washington visit this past weekend. Dublanko already has a relationship with the previous staff, so the obvious question was - does he have one now with the new staff under first-year head coach Chris Petersen?

"On my mid-winter break I went there and talked to the coaching staff," he said. "We went up there for a few hours and talked about scheme and what they were running and how I would fit."

And yesterday? "I like what I saw yesterday," Dublanko said. "(Linebackers) Coach (Bob) Gregory was really coaching the guys and encouraging them…I really liked that."

Dublanko added that he got a chance to talk to Gregory for a few minutes, and that the new LB coach told him to call anytime he wanted.

The next question was about Sark and Petersen. "They are a lot different," Dublanko said when asked to compare the two coaches. "Sark and Petersen are a lot different, I think. Sark is, from what I've seen, more involved, in the mix. Petersen is kind of watching over things a little more. I really like the U-Dub coaching staff now."

The sophomore has current scholarship offers from Washington State, Mississippi State, Akron and Montana. He's waiting to see if the Huskies offer, but is still taking everything in stride with the first-year staff.

"They are pretty new, so they are focusing on 2015 right now," he said. "But I haven't really talked to them much about it."

To Dublanko, the four early offers mean something to him. "I think it matters," he said. "It shows how interested you are. It's a level where it's like, okay they are interested. Some schools seem interested at the start but now we don't know where they are. But an offer tells you that you're at a certain level of interest."

Does early playing time matter as much? "I don't want to force it but if I'm going to play quite a bit my freshman year I can," said Dublanko. "But if I'm going to get more out of redshirting, I don't have a problem being a redshirt."

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