Top 10 In-State Recruiting Targets

Last year's in-state crop was blessed with good consistency from top to bottom but didn't have that Reggie Williams-type of 'can't miss' D1 prospect to top the list. Well, the recruiting class of 2003 has not only one, but two sure-fire Division 1 contributors. Jackson's Craig Chambers and Bethel's Johnny DuRocher headline a group of players that account for every position on the field, save tailback.

In that sense, this group has consistency from beginning to end and also has a bit of depth as well. Here's a quick, capsule look at each of the top-10. Expect all ten of these players to receive offers from Washington and also expect all of them to give the Huskies serious consideration when they are going through their deliberations.
Running Back Todd Basler
6-2 220 Elma High School
Elma, WA

Basler is a versatile athlete from Elma who racked up 2,258 yards and scored 50 times last year, earning 2A Player of the Year honors. With a 4.6 40 to his credit, Todd squats 420 pounds, benches 305 pounds and power cleans 300 pounds. He shows good explosion as he also has topped the 33-inch mark on his vertical jump.

Basler will have a very busy summer as he'll be camping at Washington State, Washington, USC and Arizona State. He will also attend the Nike camp in Oregon. He's been getting letters from Washington, USC, Arizona, Oregon, Oregon State, UCLA and Northwestern so far. Watch out for Stanford here. He impressed in Palo Alto at the NoCal NIKE camp and Tom Williams was watching Kyle like a hawk.

Basler will have to fight the stigma of coming from a smaller school, as Elma faces 2A teams on their schedule. That makes it difficult to know how hard the Husky coaches will go hard after him. Two recruiting cycles ago they went after another 2A back when they nabbed Othello's Dan McCourtie. Basler looks to be an excellent fullback at the next level. He has great driving knee action and footwork, and it shows on film.
Linebacker Tahj Bomar
6-2 207 Kentwood High School
Kent, WA

Bomar is about as active of a linebacker as you'll find in the state this year. Bomar gave a soft verbal commitment to Husky coach Rick Neuheisel, but still professes his recruitment to still be open. Oregon, Washington State, Washington, Penn State, Idaho, UCLA, Arizona State, Oregon State are the main schools recruiting Tahj, with the Huskies and Ducks in the lead at this very early stage. Watch out for the Nittany Lion though, as former Kentwood star Ryan Scott is playing in Happy Valley. Washington is his only firm offer so far.

Bomar racked up 102 solo tackles, 53 assisted tackles, six sacks, eight quarterback hurries and even tacked on an interception. He received second team all-area honors by the Tacoma News Tribune for his work.

He has a solid 4.6 40 time to his credit, as well as a 33-inch vertical jump, 280-pound bench press and 400-pound squat lift.

Bomar is a very quick, instinctual player who shows good leadership skills on tape. He's a bit undersized to play in the middle in college right now but he'll beef up. With his nose for the football, he looks to be a natural inside linebacker at the next level once he gains 20 pounds and more strength. He's a keeper.
Cornerback Derrick Bradley
5-10 175 Kamiak High School
Mukilteo, WA

There isn't a faster player in state than Derrick Bradley. With a 4.38 for the 40-yard dash, Bradley also has a standing long jump of 9'3", a 295-pound bench press and 430-pound dead lift to his credit. He also can run the ball and catch it but defensive back seems likely.

Last year for Kamiak Derrick earned first team All-WesCo 4A honors for his play on both special teams and defense.

He's getting letters from Washington and Oregon, and Washington, Washington State, Oregon and Idaho have all offered scholarships at this point in his recruitment. He's professed a preference to stay home, and that UW offer should give him something to chew on.

He's got the size and speed you want in a D1 corner and that will be where he plays.

Derrick will be going to the Oregon Nike camp and the Husky camp as well, so expect Derrick to break out this spring and become a household name for recruitniks by the summer. I expect Bradley will have a tough time keeping that UW offer under his hat and will probably accept it before everything is said and done.
Wide Receiver Craig Chambers
6-4 190 Henry M. Jackson High School
Mill Creek, WA

Chambers is an obvious choice for the cream of the crop in this year's recruiting class, along with quarterback Johnny DuRocher. Craig runs a 4.45 and jumps 37 inches in the vertical leap. He is going to remind many people of current Husky star WR Reggie Williams because of his combination of size, speed, and his ability to break open a game.

He was one of only two juniors to be named to the Seattle Times All-State team. (Bethel's David Lewis is the other one.) He was also All WesCo 4A, Seattle Times All-Area and also a Student Sports Junior All-American.

Washington, Washington State, Oregon State, Oregon, Stanford, Arizona, Arizona State, USC, Tennessee, UCLA, BYU, Penn State, Florida, LSU, Boston College and Georgia Tech are just a handful of schools that have been sending Craig literature, and Washington was the first school to offer him a full ride, which turned out to be crucial, as Craig jumped on it and verbally committed to Coach Neuheisel last week.

Without question he'll be one of the top recruits on the West Coast this year. The entire country would've been beating on this guy's door except for the fact that he's already committed to Washington. He could've afforded to be wide open with his choices but Washington closed the deal early. It didn't hurt that his older brother Ritchie is a legacy at the UW.
QB Johnny DuRocher
6-4 200 Bethel High School
Spanaway, WA

DuRocher throws the prettiest ball this side of Brock Huard, and if you don't believe me just go to Braves game this fall. I went to Bethel's playoff match up with South Kitsap and was simply blown away by the junior signal-caller. Many feel that the left-handed Huard threw the prettiest ball in high school that anyone ever saw.

Well, go check out DuRocher's arm and tell us what you think.

He has more than adequate speed (4.78 40) and has remarkable poise in the pocket. If anything, that poise at times may cause him to hold the ball too long as he honestly believes he can stay tucked in there and find a receiver regardless of pressure.

Comparisons to both Joey Harrington and Ken Dorsey are not off the mark at all. He's a prototype QB with good fundamentals, throwing for over 2,300 yards, 23 touchdowns and only six interceptions last year. He's got a great arm and can throw all the passes. Johnny was a Second team all-SPSL and first team all-area (Tacoma News Tribune) selection last year.

Washington and Oregon were in on him early, as well as Oregon State, Arizona, Stanford, UCLA and Notre Dame. Arizona, Cal, Oregon, Oregon State, Washington and Stanford had offered DuRocher but he jumped at the Duck offer and committed to Mike Bellotti early in the week. It's a huge pick up for Oregon, and a departure from years past when the Ducks got out of the gates slowly.
OL Viliamu Kuaea
6-4 305 Lakes High School
Lakewood, WA

Kuaea got my attention as a 10th grader, running like a deer at 300 pounds playing defense for Lakes' coach Dave Miller. Now at 6-4 and 315 pounds, the sky is the limit for the lineman from Lakewood, and he's already receiving letters from schools like Nebraska, BYU, Washington and Arizona State.

The Huskies and the Cornhuskers appear to have gotten off to a great start with Kuaea and have the early edge on the competition.

Unfortunately for 'Big V', there's only one thing that can come between him and the field, but it could mean the difference between earning a scholarship or going JC. He's trying hard to make up for some academic issues he had as a freshman, and it's unclear whether or not he'll be able to achieve the required CORE GPA and credits in order to matriculate to a division I school. We'll see in the coming months based on the scholarship offers that he receives. If the Huskies stay on him and he can make it, the local team may be getting a huge steal.

There's no question he can hack it on the gridiron. He'll be an incredible offensive guard in college if he can get his class work straightened out.
Defensive Back David Lewis
6-0 185 Bethel High School
Spanaway, WA

Lewis had 11 picks last year, the best of any 4A player in state and good enough to earn David All-State, All-League and All-Area first team honors.

David runs a 4.6 40 and will work on improving that mark so he can open more eyes around the Pac-10. Sometimes the difference between a blue chip and a red one can be two-tenths of a second. He has the size to make a great safety and will add a little bit of weight to his frame.

He currently benches 270 pounds. The upside for Lewis is that he's just 16 years old and just starting to scratch the surface in terms of his athleticism. It's clear he's got the intangibles required to be a great college player.

Expect colleges to be recruiting David as a safety, and it's not surprising that Bethel head coach Eric Kurle is going to play him there to give coaches a preview of what to expect. With Lewis' ability to read plays and make pure instinctual moves to get to the ball ahead of the receiver, he should be an absolute natural roving the middle.

With the current lack of experience at the safety position for the Huskies, I can't imagine Washington not taking a good, long look at this local prospect. He's been getting looks already from the Dawgs, as well as Washington State, Arizona and LSU.
OL Richy Mulcahy
6-4 265 Henry M. Jackson High School
Mill Creek, WA

Perhaps the best true 'two-way' lineman in the state of Washington, Mulcahy brings a lot of game and a lot of athleticism to the Timberwolves' attack. His last 40 time was a 4.9 and his last bench press was 350 pounds. His other current lifting numbers include a 515-pound squat and 255-pound power clean.

Those are impressive numbers and should send his stock soaring if he can improve upon them at the Oregon Nike camp this summer.

The big man also likes to throw things, including the shot, discus, and javelin. His personal bests are 47'-9" for the shot, 'around 125 feet' for the discus and 145 feet for the javelin. He's been getting letters from Oregon, Arizona State, Washington and Washington State, but has no offers to show for it currently.

Even though he's got the size and speed to be a nice defensive tackle, Mulcahy expects to be more of a guard or tackle in college. He still doesn't have the words "big time recruit" attached to his resume just yet but the Huskies know better and have been actively contacting him.

We expect the rest of the Pac-10 to discover just what a prospect Mulcahy is after he works out with the coaches at the Nike Camp in June. Washington, Washington State, Oregon State, Notre Dame, Stanford and Nebraska have all been by Jackson HS this May to see what the fuss is all about.
OL Brett Thielke
6-5 285 Skyline High School
Issaquah, WA

Thielke is arguably the best prep offensive lineman in the state of Washington, and on tape, there's no questioning the fact that he owns the finest technique. Particularly when it comes to protecting his quarterback.

Letters from Michigan, Purdue, Northwestern, Washington, Washington State, Stanford, Arizona, Arizona State and Oregon can attest to his abilities. Washington, Washington State, Oregon, Stanford and Colorado are his current leaders.

Thielke earned First Team All KingCo and All-Eastside honors for his work last year on the offensive line. Because Skyline coach Steve Gervais runs a wide open spread attack, Thielke has become quite proficient at pass blocking and zone blocking. Those are huge plusses for an offensive tackle. What is harder to determine on film is his ability to block on running plays. However his size allows him to make it look easy to just block his guy and stand his ground, which he does with impressive regularity.

It'll be interesting to see what he does when it comes to downfield blocking and the other nuances of blocking on running plays. Expect Brett to be a priority for the Dawgs this summer and fall.
Safety Kyle Trew
6-2 215 Edmonds-Woodway High School
Edmonds, WA

Trew is the real deal, running a 4.56 at 215 pounds. It's that kind of speed that will make him either a fullback on offense or either a safety or outside linebacker in college, depending on how much he grows from now until the fall of 2003.

He scored 17 times for Edmonds-Woodway last year, rushing for 1527 yards along the way. He earned All-WesCo honors on offense and defense, an impressive feat.

Kyle benches 270 pounds, power cleans 305 and squats 360. Letters have been trickling in from Washington, Oregon, Texas, OSU, Arizona, Stanford and UCLA, and Kyle lists the Huskies, Bruins and Longhorns as the three schools he's most interested in at this time, with Washington as his only current scholarship offer so far.

The Nike camp in Eugene will give Trew a chance to really strut his stuff and there's no question he'll make his mark. He's just too good of an athlete. This is another safety that can fill a hole for the Dawgs, and he's versatile enough to do damage from other positions. It's that kind of versatility that the Husky coaches love.
Unfortunately our top list ends at 10, but that doesn't mean there aren't some other noteworthy players. Here's a brief list of some others to watch out for.

Quarterbacks - Jared Bronson (Jefferson), Brian Foreman (Skyline), Kyle Kendrick (Mount Vernon), Ben Huebschman (Mountain View), Ben Shelton (Lincoln), AJ Porter (Kennedy), Jason Morris (Jackson), Casey Waddell (Walla Walla), JT Zink (Curtis), Jeff Wells (Lakes)

Running Backs - Josh Bousman (Tacoma Baptist), OJ Washington (Curtis), Marcus Reed (Curtis), Akeem Anthony (Lakes), Anthony Russo (Lakes), Kyle Duffy (Meadowdale), Tyson Gamblin (Enumclaw), Anthony Dotson (Federal Way), CJ Marsh (Jackson)

Receivers - Steve Manning (Emerald Ridge), Jesse Clark (Mt. Spokane), Whitney Wilson (Kamiak), Andre Piper-Jordan (Federal Way), John Markus Pinard (Bellevue), Casey Tyler (Edmonds-Woodway), Joey Henley (Kentridge), James Seifert (Battle Ground), Chase Reed (Orting)

Linemen - Matt Hermanson (Wilson), Aaron Gilbert (Jefferson), Jacob Bouge (University), John Washines (Toppenish), Dan Gore (Prosser), Joshua Tschirgi (Skyview), Nick Owens (Shelton), Drew Fowler (Kentwood), James Harrison (Kentridge), Robert Simpson (Franklin), Chad Sutter (River Ridge), Chris Bush (Southridge), Jeff Dicks (Bellevue), Chris Carleson (North Kitsap), Jared Brandonberry (Cashmere)

Linebackers - Adam Hunter (Fife), Andy Sund (South Kitsap), Brody O'Connor (Skyline), Derek Coxson (Lakes), Derrik Shockman (Curtis), Lee Driftmier (Bellevue)

Defensive Backs - James Day (Mountain View), Jordan Carey (Capital), John Kosturos (Olympia), Aubrey Neal (Bremerton), Epaphroditus Gordon (Hudson's Bay), Cody Ellis (Puyallup) Top Stories