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 7 …
*** It was a big week for Cal, which received a commitment from three-star defensive lineman Amos Talalele from Santa Clara.
Why is this a big commitment? Well, the 330-pounder had set up official visits with Arizona, Washington and USC in the rest of June.
Cal was his first visit, and with him being a Bay Area kid, the Bears definitely had that advantage. But a lot of people thought USC and Washington would be in the mix and maybe pull an upset.
But the upset was actually pulled by Cal, which got him to commit on his official visit and cancel his other three visits.
It’s a big win for head coach Justin Wilcox and defensive line coach Andrew Browning.
Talalele can play on both lines of scrimmage. It’s not unreasonable to think he could play on offense, but Cal is bringing him in as a defensive lineman. Huge victory for the Bears.
*** Arizona got some good news with a couple of commitments.
One is from New Mexico, from Tylen Gonzalez an unranked, 250-pound jumbo athlete who visited Tucson over the weekend and will probably play defensive line.
The other is from Centennial High School in Corona, where the Wildcats have always had success. They received a commitment from 265-pound defensive lineman Lucas Conti, who also took his official visit.
The three-star prospect is another good pick-up for Arizona — that’s two really good defensive linemen in this class with Gonzalez and Conti.
Anytime you can get a player out of Centennial, you know he’s going to be tough, physical, pretty well coached and ready to play right away.
*** In other news, three-star offensive tackle Heath Ozaeta from Mt. Si High School in Snoqualmie, Wash., took an official visit to Utah over the weekend.
The trip prompted him to cancel an official visit that was set up for Washington State this week. It also caused him to move up a visit from Nebraska and cancel a visit to Cincinnati at the end of the month.
Ozaeta likely will commit toward the end of June, but it’s down to a top three for him: UCLA, Utah and Nebraska, with Nebraska getting the last stop.
*** We saw another significant offensive line development with three-star tackle Tobias Raymond from Ventura High School.
Cal could have an opportunity to go into Southern California and grab a really good offensive lineman, but now the Bears have to weather a USC push for Raymond and the official visit to Oregon State.
*** Lastly, we should mention the state of the recruiting calendar.
College camps are in full swing this month. We had the Elite 11 regional camp in Southern California last weekend, and the Western Oregon Showcase with both Oregon coach Dan Lanning and Oregon State coach Jonathan Smith.
Cal had a camp; UCLA and USC both had camps; and Oregon State had a camp.
So the Pac-12 schools are really starting to ramp up their own team camps, and you have the mega-camps, too, as we head into the really busy visit season over the next three weekends.
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