Guanella hopes for big things in 2012

One of the top returning JUCO edge-rushers in Northern California this year is Santa Rosa DE Garrett Guanella (6-5, 235). The only thing holding him back from several schools offering has been his size and he's been out to show everyone he has what it takes to play at the next level.

When it comes to productivity, you don't find many players who have the same type of freshman season that Guanella had as he racked up over 50 tackles while posting a team leading 12 tackles-for-loss and finished with 11 sacks from his weakside or STUD defensive end spot.

"I have never had problems getting after the quarterback," Guanella told recently. "I can deal with open-space pretty well and I can stop the run well too, but if you are looking for a strength it's definitely my pass-rush."

Even though he was very productive, Guanella isn't taking anything for granted this offseason as he's been working hard to be less predictable.

"Last year I was almost strictly a speed guy and that worked well for me, but I definitely have been focused on my power moves," Guanella noted. "Last year I was a lot lighter, probably about 210 or 215, so I've put on some weight and that's something that should really help me."

On the recruiting front, Guanella has been hearing from a few schools, but has yet to haul in his first offer.

"I've been hearing from Arkansas, Fresno State, San Jose State, Nevada, Cal-Poly, Sacramento State, New Mexico and Western Michigan," Guanella said. "Pittsburgh wanted me for this year, but because I was way smaller than they were looking for when they saw me, I was about 210 and they wanted to see me put on some size so they are another school that likes me, but they want to see more of me and I think a lot of schools are like that right now."

Guanella was a full-qualifier after graduating from Cardinal Newman (Santa Rosa, Ca.) High School.

Guanella can leave at any time, but he plans to leave after the season and he will have three years to play two following the 2012 football season.

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