A Familiar Face

When Washington went hunting for defensive linemen for their class of 2000, San Pedro High School had a young man that fit the bill in every way except one. When it came time for the freshmen to report, the "tough as nails" nose tackle prospect from California was not among them.

After recording 82 tackles and four sacks as a senior in high school, Chris Solomona headed to El Camino Community College to earn his Associate Arts degree before matriculating to a division I school.

He's back on the radar screen bigger than life now. He's filled out to now 6-5 285 and had a solid season for El Camino.

"I think it's really helped me a lot on and off the field," Solomona told Dawgman.com.

"The level of play here is pretty high in our league, and we won the mission conference championship last year."

As the starting nose tackle Solomona had 55 tackles, 3 sacks, and two forced fumbles. His quickness will earn him the starting defensive end job this fall for El Camino.

The sojourn to Community College has been a very positive experience for him. "I've learned a lot here, things I didn't know in high school. I think I played pretty well. I didn't even know I was going to a JC until mid August. Considering how I was feeling I performed pretty well," said Solomona.

"This upcoming season I know how it is now and I know what I have to do."

Not getting into Washington definitely hurt the big defensive lineman, but his brother transferred to El Camino from Utah and that made the change of plans a little easier to accept.

Heading into his final year of JC football, Solomona has already received offers from Oregon and Oregon State. South Carolina Head Coach Lou Holtz phoned him and made quite an impression. "That was something. The way he is and the way he talks to you, it's hard to describe. He's a good man, a good coach, and knows a lot about football."

As of this interview, Washington will definitely be the team to beat for Solomona. "Lots of schools want me to be part of their program but Washington is where my heart is. I fell in love with it on my recruiting trip. I'd love to play with Zach (Tuiasosopo). Everything is green up there, it's a beautiful place."

Solomona hopes to take another recruiting trip to Seattle this fall to catch up with Tuiasosopo, and says he'll complete his degree in one more year. "I am on track. Everything is on track now on my schoolwork."

Solomona is a big time defensive lineman and if his transcript comes in solid as expected, Washington will definitely go after him hard and try to close the deal.

This is recruiting and of course anything can happen, but we strongly believe that this recruiting race will be over shortly and that Solomona will be a Husky.

It would be two years later than what Solomona had planned for but the big man from San Pedro is worth the wait.

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