"It was great," Bowser told Dawgman.com Sunday afternoon. I liked all the coaches on the coaching staff and all the players I met. I could tell it would be a great place for me to play."
Jon Lyon was Bowser's host, which made sense. Lyon played last year at
Saddleback before signing a letter of intent to play at Washington as a mid-year
But let's lay a little groundwork on Bowser's background. Chris went to Aliso
Niguel High School in Aliso Viejo, California, about half-way between Los
Angeles and San Diego. "I had two offers from smaller schools (Weber State
and Idaho State)," he said. "I held out until the end, and then decided to go to
Saddleback for two years and then go to a bigger school. But a week before the
signing date I decided that I wanted to play in college, so I called Weber State to
let them know that I was going to Idaho State.
"When I called Idaho State they told me that they had just filled my spot an hour
before, so I decided to go to Saddleback."
Bowser's first year at Saddleback was a trying one. "I had a nagging shoulder
injury," he said. "There was a lot of instability. I was able to get it stronger, but it
still wasn't strong enough to play. So I took a medical redshirt and had it scoped.
And this last year I feel like I played well."
One school thought highly enough to start recruiting Chris behind Saddleback's
back. "Well, there was just one school that called me throughout and that was Nevada,"
said Bowser. "Even though my coaches thought I was going to stay one more year,
Nevada called me anyways. And then Coach (Dan) Cozzetto got some Saddleback film.
He's a friend of Coach (Mark) McElroy's. He saw me in the film and asked about me. I
know Coach Cozzetto from high school because he recruited me for Oregon State.
He said that he'd been following me and told me that he felt I was capable of making
a contribution at Washington."
Even though McElroy and the Saddleback staff weren't thrilled about how things had
developed, they saw the writing on the wall. "It became pretty apparent to the coaches
that I was going to leave, so they started making some calls for me," said Bowser. "I've
always liked UNLV because of Coach (John) Robinson, so they called a couple of days
later and offered me a scholarship. A week after that, Washington offered me.
"So then I set three trips up. I was going to go to Washington on December 5th, UNLV on
the 12th and then Nevada on the 19th, but the night after the Boise State game, the coach
that had been recruiting me for Nevada (DJ McCarthy), let me know that my recruitment
was going to stop.
"And then last week, on the Thursday right before I was going to leave for my Washington
trip, Colorado called. They saw my film and were really eager to set up a visit. So I'm
going to go to Colorado on the 10th, Wednesday, and then go straight to Las Vegas after
Even though Bowser has spent two years at Saddleback, he still considers himself a '3 for
3' player. "I've been told I can apply for a sixth year because of my shoulder," he said.
That gets us up to date. So on with news of the UW official visit. "The whole trip was
amazing," said Chris. "Coach Cozzetto came to my house last Monday to meet my
family and he showed me pictures of the school, but going there was so much better. I
didn't really expect it to be that good.
"I really liked all the support they give you - the tutoring, the facilities, the training facilities.
They have 31 libraries on campus! The other thing is that they've got two pretty new strength
coaches (Pete Kaligis and Steve Emtman) who played at Washington, who dropped the
number of shoulder injuries from twelve to zero. Because of my shoulder, that was something
that really caught my attention.
"I also liked the fact that there's a lot of access to computers because of Bill Gates and his
association with the school."
Bowser appeared to make a similar impression on the Husky coaches. "The coaching staff
seemed really energetic to me," he said. "They want to get the program back in the right
direction. They ended the season on a positive note, but weren't satisfied. They want to get
back on top.
"Coach (Keith) Gilbertson let me know that I'm their number-one JC offensive line prospect. He
told me that there are a couple of other guys below me that are just chomping on the bit to
play there. He thinks I can step in and play right away."
And position? "I know they are trying to get back to right and left tackle instead of weak and
strong, so I would probably play right tackle," he said. "I know Khalif Barnes is coming back as
a senior at the other tackle position."
Because Washington is on the quarter system, Bowser has told the Husky coaches that he will
be making his decision shortly after his final visit. "Before my visit I had UNLV 60/40 but after my
visit to Washington it levelled the field between those two," Chris said. "And now with my
Colorado visit I'm not sure what to expect."
Chris Bowser scout profile
Chris Bowser trip report
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