The foundation for recruiting success during the December signing window often is laid in the spring, when on-campus visits are taken, shortlists created and verbal commitments made.
The Hotline is delighted to provide Pac-12 fans with a dive into the process through the eyes and ears of Brandon Huffman, the Seattle-based national recruiting analyst for 247Sports.
Huffman will relay news and insight into the latest developments and cast an eye ahead to upcoming events that will shape the 2022-23 recruiting cycle.
The following information, in his words, was provided to the Hotline on June 13 …
*** Oregon State had the most significant commitment in the Pac-12 last week. It came from three-star quarterback Aidan Chiles, from Southern California.
Chiles had scholarship offers from Washington, Oregon and Cal, and he took an official visit to Washington State just days after seeing Oregon State. But he ended up committing to the Beavers.
That negated the need for Oregon State to bring in three-star quarterback Luke Duncan, from Orinda, California. (More on Duncan in a moment.) Chiles is a top-25 quarterback nationally. Not only does he help the Beavers, but they have managed to keep him away from the four North division schools that were pursuing him heavily.
*** The Beavers also received a commitment from three-star wideout David Wells, who’s from Lakewood, Washington, and has been one of the top receivers in the Pacific Northwest for the past couple years.
What’s key about Wells is not only are the Beavers getting a really strong pass catcher, but his 7-on-7 teammate, three-star tight end Dorian Thomas, has been committed to Oregon State since November.
Arizona was trying to bring in Thomas for an official visit, and Arizona State was recruiting him, too. But Wells’ commitment probably keeps Thomas in the fold for OSU and keeps him from looking elsewhere.
That’s important, because Thomas is one of the top 10 players in the state of Washington in 2023. To get him and Wells and three-star tight end Cooper Jensen, who solidified his commitment a week ago — the Beavers are doing really well in Washington.
*** USC landed unrated tackle Tobias Raymond on Monday night. It’s a significant move because Raymond is the first offensive lineman to commit to USC in the class of 2023.
After he visited Cal two weekends ago, Raymond received a scholarship offer from USC. He took his official visit and committed to them. So Lincoln Riley and offensive coordinator Josh Henson have their guy on the offensive line in advance of their big recruiting weekend coming up.
Raymond is a 6-foot-6, 270-pound left tackle with a lot of room to grow. He attends Ventura High School, whose two most famous football alumni have gone to UCLA: Eric Turner and Tyler Ebell.
Raymond also will become the first Ventura High player to go on scholarship to USC in at least the last 60 years.
*** Arizona welcomed a good chunk of recruits last weekend, including the Wildcats’ quarterback commitment in the 2023 class: four-star prospect Brayden Dorman out of Colorado Springs.
They brought in four-star receiver Jeremiah McClure from Mater Dei in Chula Vista. His teammate, Tre Edwards, committed to UCLA over Arizona a couple weeks ago, so now the Wildcats are trying to fight back and get McClure.
They also were able to host several defensive players from the West Coast, including three-star linebacker Solomon Davis from Covina and Jacob Lane, a three-star defensive end from Puyallup, Washington, who will visit the Huskies at the end of the month.
*** Cal is on commitment watch this week with three-star recruit Ashton Sanders, who had one of the most entertaining official visit videos that we’ve seen in this recruiting cycle.
Sanders is a 300-pound defensive lineman out of Cathedral High in Los Angeles who will be announcing his decision, between Cal and Wisconsin, this week.
The Bears are in a good spot for him after the visit and a video that went viral of Sanders driving around a golf cart like Marshawn Lynch did many years ago. Lynch’s drive might be Cal’s second-most iconic play, behind The Play, and now recruits are mimicking that on their official visits.
*** The quarterback dominos could help Cal in the near future with four-star Jaden Rashada expected to announce his decision on Saturday. He’s the top uncommitted quarterback in California, and we’re all but certain the Pittsburg, California, prospect is headed to the SEC.
Assuming Rashada leaves the Pac-12, the Bears would bring in Duncan, the three-star quarterback from nearby Orinda, for an official visit on June 24 — and possibly secure a commitment.
The Bears also are hosting three-star cornerback Sailasa Vadrawale from Rohnert Park, California. That’s the only official visit he has set up so far. They could be getting quite a few doses of good news this week.
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