Eagles add 10 more players on National Signing Day - SWX Right Now-Sports for Spokane, CdA, Tri-Cities, WA

Eagles add 10 more players on National Signing Day

Photo: EWU Athletics Photo: EWU Athletics

By Eastern Washington Athletics

What they started successfully in December, the Eagles capped with a bang in February.
 
Adding a group of players that includes three more All-State selections from the state of Washington, the Eastern Washington University football program signed eight high school players to national letters of intent on Feb. 7 to attend EWU and play for the school next fall.
 
The Eagles also announced a pair of players who have been admitted and confirmed attendance at EWU, plus the Eagles had already announced seven signees and a transfer in the new early signing period in December. The signing class overall is ranked No. 1 in the Big Sky Conference by 247sports.com, and in the top 10 in the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision (#136 overall among all college football programs).
 
"Time will tell," said Eastern head Aaron Best. "It's a tribute to our staff for bringing in what on paper is the best Big Sky class in 2018, but hopefully we can marry that up with the league's best football team in the future. That would be the cherry on top. But there is a lot of work that goes into signing a class of players each year. A lot of the credit goes to (recruiting coordinator) Cherokee Valeria for what he's put forth and challenged our coaching staff to do."
 
The newest list of additions features Sumner (Wash.) High School's Tre Weed, but also includes a trio of single season 2,000-yard rushers (one of them with 3,000+), and a bevy of former high school teammates. Of the 18 new additions the Eagles have now announced from the December and February signing periods, 16 of them are from the state of Washington.
 
"Washington was again a great destination for us to find the majority of our class in 2018," said Best. "It's just how it played out this year, but it could be different next year. But we're going to enjoy this class, and we've worked on them for the better part of a year and some of them it seems like 1 1/2 and 2 years. We're proud and honored to welcome the entire class to this campus, to this university and to this team."
 
Weed was signed as a safety, although he was also a talented receiver and returner the past three seasons for Sumner. He earned All-State honors as an all-purpose player, is a three-star recruit and is considered by the Seattle Times as a "Red Chip" selection as one of the top 16 prospects in the State. He finished his career with nearly 6,000 all-purpose yards to go along with 83 total touchdowns and 19 interceptions – plus wins in 33 of the team's 38 games.
 
"He's very talented, especially when the ball is in his hands," said Best. "On defense we'll want the ball in his hands as many times as we can with interceptions and fumble recoveries. He's very dynamic, and had multiple FBS offers. But he felt this would be his home away from home after high school. He's an important piece of the puzzle, especially from a defensive standpoint, but what a great all-around athlete he is."
 
Of the trio of running backs the Eagles added, Tiquan Gilmore from Torres High School in California had 3,266 rushing yards as a junior, and more than 6,000 yards and 75 touchdowns in two seasons. In-state products Micah Smith from Graham-Kapowsin HS and Isaiah Lewis from Monroe HS each had single season rushing performances of better than 2,000 yards.
 
Eastern signed a trio of players from the Rainier Beach High School team which finished as the State 3A runner-up in 2017. One of them -- wide receiver Anthony Stell Jr. – was All-State in 2017, as well as Weed and Lewis. A total of 14 players earned recognition from the Seattle Times on its list of the top 100 recruits in the State of Washington.
 
Two other sets of teammates are joining the Eagles, as well as one other signee who follows in the footsteps of a current Eagle.
 
The Eagles will have a large group of juniors on its 2018 team, but had only 14 seniors in 2017. The Eagle defense will return eight starters, including letter winners at two other positions with considerable starting experience. Eastern will return nine starters on offense.
 
"We have 14 seniors, so it's not like we can sign 20-25 this year," said Best back in December. "Our two main areas of focus in recruiting this year were offensive line and cornerback. We are going to lose five offensive lineman after the 2018 season, so we want to be ahead of the curve instead of behind it. At cornerback, we've lost at least one, and we'll lose three more this next year. Those are situations we have to look far in advance to see where we are going to have to plug and play."
 
Eastern closed the 2017 season 7-4 overall and in a tie for third in the Big Sky Conference with a 6-2 record. It's the 11th-straight season the Eagles have finished 5-3 or better in the Big Sky. The Eagles also secured its record 11th-straight winning season and 20th in the last 22 years.
 

Zion Fa'aopega DE 6-4 240 Vancouver, Wash. / Union HS '18
Tiquan Gilmore RB 5-10 170 Los Angeles, Calif. / Torres HS '18
Emmanuel Osuoha LB 6-1 220 Seattle, Wash. / Archbishop Murphy HS '18
Freddie Roberson WR 6-3 180 Seattle, Wash. / Rainier Beach HS '18
Micah Smith RB 6-0 190 Spanaway, Wash. / Graham-Kapowsin HS '18
Darrien Sampson CB 6-1 170 South Seattle, Wash. / Rainier Beach HS '18
Anthony Stell Jr. WR 5-10 170 Seattle Wash. / Rainier Beach HS '18
Tre Weed S 6-0 190 Sumner, Wash. / Sumner HS '18
***Aiden Nellor TE 6-4 220 Vancouver, Wash. / Union HS '18
***Isaiah Lewis RB 6-0 200 Monroe, Wash. / Monroe HS '18

*** Did not sign a letter of intent but has been admitted and confirmed his attendance at EWU.
 
Pronunciations
Fa'aopega – "Fah-ow-pang-uh"
Tiquan – "Tie-kwan"
Osuoha – "Oh-sue-ha"



 

Zion Fa'aopega – DE – 6-4 – 240 – Vancouver, Wash. / Union HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Fa'aopega: "We had him in camp here last year, and Coach Rosenbach does a phenomenal job of getting more with less – much like our mentality here at Eastern Washington. Zion is a good one, and we think he's big enough to play multiple positions on the defensive line. We'll start him out at defensive end, but he's very coachable. He's dynamic and raw in a good way -- he has a lot of growth ahead of him. He's one of those big pieces of clay and the sky is the limit for him. He has an aggressive demeanor, is a ball hawk and has the size to play multiple positions. He has an infectious personality and comes from a great family. And he'll have one of his high school teammate here too on the offensive side – they'll butt heads literally and figuratively in the next few years."
 
Will graduate from Union HS in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington.
 
As a senior, he was a first team All-Greater St. Helens League selection as a defensive lineman. He helped Union to the 4A GSL title with a 4-0 record and a 9-2 overall mark. The Titans lost to Sumner 42-14 in the first round of the State 4A Playoffs.
 
Also competed in wrestling and track and field at Union. His high school teammate Aiden Nellor will also join the Eagles in fall of 2018. They were coached at Union by Rory Rosenbach.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in criminal justice at EWU. Born 6/29/2000 in American Samoa. Parents are Timothy Fa'aopega and Soa Tarrant-Fa'aopega. Nicknames are "Z" and "Ziggy."
 
 
 

Tiquan Gilmore – RB, 5-10, 170, Los Angeles, Calif. / Torres HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Gilmore: "He didn't play a full slate of games but he still had great production as a senior. He's very dynamic – when you give the ball to him he can make you miss in a lot of different ways. He doesn't come from a huge school in L.A., but our coaches did a good job of locating Tiquan. We're excited about the ability to get him the ball, especially in space. He has a lot of upside physically and mentally, and he has a chance to be a great one before he leaves Cheney. The sky is the limit for him. He's a three-down back who can catch the ball out of the backfield, runs in between the tackles and he runs outside the tackles. He has multiple capabilities and we're excited to have him onboard. He's quiet by nature, but not on the football field -- his playmaking ability is loud."
 
Will graduate from Torres HS in 2018. In his stellar two-year career as the leading rusher both seasons in the Los Angeles City Section of the California Interscholastic Federation, Gilmore rushed for more than 6,000 yards, had more than 7,500 all-purpose yards and scored in excess of 75 touchdowns. He averaged better than 15 yards per rush in his career, as well as averages of 28.6 on 22 kickoff returns, 42.8 on four punt returns and 34.7 on six interceptions.
                                                                                                   
As a senior, he was the Offensive Player of the Year on the All-CIF Los Angeles City Section Division III team. He was the leading rusher in the section with nearly 2,900 yards rushing. In 10 games documented (statistics missing from two games), he scored 37 touchdowns and had 2,706 all-purpose yards. He averaged 37.1 yards on seven kickoff returns, 36.5 on a pair of punt returns and 23.5 on two interceptions. He also had 46 tackles and four passes broken up. He also completed 8-of-19 passes for 174 more yards and a TD. He was the CalHiSports.com Southern California Player of the Week when he scored a CIF Los Angeles City Section record nine touchdowns against Franklin. He rushed 15 times for a career-high 451 yards (30.1 per carry) and eight touchdowns, and he took a kickoff return back 82 yards for a ninth TD. Gilmore also ran in a two-point conversion for a total of 56 points scored in the 64-33 victory, and even had eight tackles on defense. Earlier in the season he scored seven touchdowns against Verdugo Hills, rushing for 241 yards and four scores, while also finishing with a TD on a punt return, kickoff return and interception return. The Toros finished 7-5 in the 2017 season and advanced to the quarterfinals of the Los Angeles City Section Division III Playoffs. Torres beat Jordan 34-6 in the first round before falling to Verdugo Hills 43-13.
 
As a junior, he also earned first team All-CIF Los Angeles City Section Division III honors and was the MVP/Player of the Year in the Northern League. He led the section with 3,266 yards rushing on 217 carries (15.1 per rush). He scored 33 touchdowns on the ground and caught 10 passes for 280 yards and three more scores. He also averaged 24.6 yards on 15 kickoff returns, 47.5 with a touchdown on two punt returns and 40.3 with a TD on four interception returns. In all, he scored 38 touchdowns and averaged 347.6 all-purpose yards per game with a grand total of 4,171. He also completed 6-of-8 passes for 97 more yards and a TD, and had 10 passes broken up, 37 total tackles, two fumble recoveries and a sack on defense. He rushed for at least 200 yards in all but two games, with a high of 409 and three touchdowns (29.2 per carry) versus Sotomayor. He scored five touchdowns on the ground and had 360 yards (22.5 per carry) against Franklin. He had 400+ all-purpose yards in four games, including a high of 491 against Sotomayor. He led his team to a final record of 8-4 and a quarterfinal appearance in the Los Angeles City Section Division III Playoffs. Torres beat Angelou 47-21 in the first round before falling to Hollywood 27-21.

Was coached in high school by Charles Burnley. He also played basketball at Torres.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in communications at EWU. Born 10/26/99 in Los Angeles. His mother is Taneka Bellamy. Nickname is "TQ." Is a first generation college student in his family.
 
 

Emmanuel Osuoha – LB, 6-1, 220, Seattle, Wash. / Archbishop Murphy HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Osuoha: "He's a very tenacious football player, and is salty, physical and plays ornery. He missed his entire senior year because of injury, but his junior video was good enough for us to feel like he can make us better. He's going to make plays on special teams, on defense and wherever you put him. He's a ball hawk and not scared. He plays the game old-school style the way it should be played. He has great size and is sturdy – he can play inside the tackles or he can run. He has enough juice to run down a play outside the box. Coach Jensen has many players going many different directions after high school. We're excited to land a player like Emmanuel – who knows if he plays as a senior and we may not be in the discussion of where he goes to college. Anferee Gurley is a former high school teammate, and we're excited to get the two of them linked up together again."
 
Will graduate from Archbishop Murphy HS in 2018. He is listed as a two-star recruit by 247sports.com.
 
He missed his senior season with a torn ACL suffered in July 2017.
 
As a junior, he earned second team All-Cascade Conference honors as a running back. The Wildcats capped a perfect season by beating Liberty of Issaquah 56-14 for the 2A State title, their first since back-to-back championships in 2002 and 2003. In a 48-10 win over Tumwater in the quarterfinals, he rushed twice and scored both times on runs of 13 and 35 yards. The private school made national news by receiving five forfeits after dominating opponents in its first three games 170-0.
 
In his sophomore season, the Wildcats advanced to the semifinals of the State 2A Playoffs, but lost to Tumwater 24-21. His former high school teammate, Anfernee Gurley ('17), played significantly as a true freshman for the Eagles after earning a variety of All-State honors when he played for the Wildcats. They were coached in high school by Jerry Jensen.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in medicine at EWU. Born 12/21/99 in Everett, Wash. Parents are Cyril Osuoha and Victoria Nwachukwu.
 
 
 

Freddie Roberson – WR – 6-3 – 180 – Seattle, Wash. / Rainier Beach HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Roberson: "He's talented, whether he has a round ball or an oval ball in his hands. He's very talented on the basketball court and he can hold his own no matter who it is against. He's long and is a playmaker. He jumped out at us when we watched his video. We created a relationship with Freddie to see if football could be his first love. So we're excited to get him onboard. Running back was his natural position in high school, but he has the ability to develop great ball-catching ability. It's something we'll work on daily as he makes the transition. When the ball is in his hands, he's as good as anybody in the state for what he does after the catch or handoff. We're extremely pleased to sign him, as well as two of his teammates. They all play different positions and they are all dynamic in their own way."
 
Will graduate from Rainier Beach HS in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington. He was rated as a three-star recruit as an "athlete" and the 22nd best prospect in the state of Washington by 247sports.com. He was also a three-star prospect by scout.com. He was a two-star prospect on rivals.com.
 
In his senior season, Roberson earned second team All-3A Metro League Mountain Division honors as both a running back and outside linebacker. Roberson helped Rainier Beach finish 10-3 overall and 3-1 in the 3A Metro League Mountain Division standings. The Vikings advanced to the State 3A championship game where it lost to O'Dea 38-11. Rainier Beach won preliminary playoff games against Mt. Spokane (28-21), Peninsula (37-28) and Garfield (49-21).
 
In his junior season in 2016, Rainier Beach finished 8-3 to advance to the State 3A Playoffs, and won the 3A Metro League Valley Division title with a perfect 5-0 record.
 
He also played basketball for Rainier Beach, where he helped the Vikings win the State 3A title in his sophomore season, finishing 23-6 after beating O'Dea 70-49 for the title. His teammates Antony Stell Jr. and Darrien Sampson also signed with the Eagles, and their coach at Rainier Beach was Darrien's father, Corey Sampson.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in sports medicine at EWU. Born 11/17/99 in Seattle. Parents are Simetress and Ronald Robertson. His real first name is Frederick, but he goes by his nickname "Freddie."
 
 
 
 

Darrien Sampson – CB - 6-1 – 170 – South Seattle, Wash. / Rainier Beach HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Sampson: "It's hard to recruit lengthy cornerbacks, and even harder to recruit those kind of talented in-state cornerbacks. He played in the state championship game so he's a winner. He's been coached well and he thrives at the cornerback position. At 6-1, you can't coach length and speed, so we feel like we got a steal. A lot of that has to do with his father being his coach. He understands what we are all about, and what kinds of players and people we are trying to recruit. We're fortunate to have Darrien on board and he has a great future ahead of him. We don't have many 6-foot and above cornerbacks here and look forward to what he brings to the table physically."
 
Will graduate from Rainier Beach HS in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington. He was rated by 247sports.com as a 3-star recruit and the No. 30 prospect in the state of Washington. Rivals.com rated him as a 2-star recruit.
 
As a senior, he earned first team All-3A Metro League Mountain Division honors as a cornerback. He helped Rainier Beach finish 10-3 overall and 3-1 in the 3A Metro League Mountain Division standings. The Vikings advanced to the State 3A championship game where it lost to O'Dea 38-11. Rainier Beach won preliminary playoff games against Mt. Spokane (28-21), Peninsula (37-28) and Garfield (49-21).
 
In his junior season in 2016, Rainier Beach finished 8-3 to advance to the State 3A Playoffs, and won the 3A Metro League Valley Division title with a perfect 5-0 record. He also earned all-league recognition as a junior and sophomore.
 
His teammates Antony Stell Jr. and Frederick Roberson also signed with the Eagles, and their coach at Rainier Beach was Darrien's father, Corey Sampson. Sampson also played basketball for Rainier Beach, which won the State 3A title his sophomore season and finished 23-6 after beating O'Dea 70-49 for the title.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in engineering at EWU. Born 12/2/99. Calif. Parents are Corey Sampson and Collette Frazier. Nickname is "D.samp."
 
 
 

Micah Smith – RB – 6-0 – 190 – Spanaway, Wash. / Graham-Kapowsin HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Smith: "Micah is a talented football player and is a great human being. He is a sturdy runner and plays bigger than his size. He plays about 6-3, 250 – he's put together well. He's probably not going to put on a lot of weight when he's here, but he's a three-down back and he will consistently impose his will on linebackers, defensive linemen and safeties when given the opportunity. He won a ton of games and was in the playoffs multiple times in high school. His huge smile is infectious, and he's great to be around. Coach Curley does a great job and will always have players move on to college from Graham-Kapowsin. They've won a lot of games and have had a lot of Division I-caliber players over the years, and Micah Smith is a part of that legacy."
 
Will graduate from Graham-Kapowsin HS in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington. He was rated as a two-star recruit by Rivals.com, Scout.com and 247sports.com, which also rated him as the 31st best prospect in the state of Washington.  
 
As a senior, he earned first team All-4A South Puget Sound League honors as a running back. Graham-Kapowsin's offense was altered to take advantage of junior quarterback Dylan Morris, a four-star recruit headed for the University of Washington.  Smith missed three games with injuries, but had 616 rushing yards in the regular season and added 207 yards and two touchdowns on 24 carries in a 38-31 win over Lake Stevens in the State 4A Playoffs. He had a 93-yard touchdown run to give the Eagles a 21-10 lead. He had a pair of 200-yard rushing games on the season and had at least 100 yards rushing in three games. He had a best of 221 yards versus Arlington. The Eagles finished 10-2 overall and were 7-1 in the 4A South Puget Sound League to finish as the runner-up behind 8-0 Puyallup. Their season came to an end with a 49-17 loss to eventual State 4A runner-up Woodinville in the quarterfinals.
 
As a junior, he was selected to the Tacoma News-Tribune All-Area team as a running back and also earned first team All-4A SPSL honors. He ran 228 times for 2,034 yards (8.9 per carry) on the season after having 1,713 yards and 24 touchdowns in the regular season.  His regular season yardage total was fourth-best best in 4A South Puget Sound League history.  He scored six touchdowns and had 234 yards rushing in a 71-43 win over Puyallup. Graham-Kapowsin won a district playoff game against Kentlake (55-28) before losing to eventual state champion Camas (55-6) in the first round of the State 4A Playoffs. The Eagles were 9-2 overall and were 7-1 to finish second in the 4A SPSL behind 8-0 Sumner.
 
A knee injury kept Smith from playing as a sophomore at Graham-Kapowsin. Current Eagle Matt Shook ('17) also attended Graham-Kapowsin, and helped block for Smith during his 2,000-yard season.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in history or political science at EWU. Born 11/9/99 in Puyallup, Wash. Parents are Michael Smith and Katrice Davis-Smith.
 
 
 

Anthony Stell Jr. – WR – 5-10 – 170 – Seattle Wash. / Rainier Beach HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Stell: "He was also highly-recruited and decided Eastern was going to be his destination beyond high school. We can see him playing on either side of the ball – he excels on offense and defense. We'll start him on the offensive side of the ball because we think his play-making ability will help make us more dynamic. We need a little more speed and he allows us that opportunity. He's not small and he's not huge, but he has jets. He can run after the catch and makes people miss. He can out-run a lot of the players after him, and that's what we need. It doesn't ever hurt to have teammates, and we're excited to have three Rainier Beach and Seattle products coming to Cheney."
 
Will graduate from Rainier Beach HS in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington. He was rated by 247sports.com as a 3-star recruit and the No. 17 prospect in the state of Washington. Rivals.com rated him as a 2-star recruit.
 
As a senior, he was a first team 3A All-State selection as a tight end by the Associated Press. He also earned Star Times all-area honors by the Seattle Times. He was an All-3A Metro League Mountain Division selection as both a wide receiver and a cornerback. He helped Rainier Beach finish 10-3 overall and 3-1 in the 3A Metro League Mountain Division standings. The Vikings advanced to the State 3A championship game where it lost to O'Dea 38-11. Rainier Beach won preliminary playoff games against Mt. Spokane (28-21), Peninsula (37-28) and Garfield (49-21).
 
In his junior season in 2016, he earned all-league honors as both a wide receiver and defensive back. Rainier Beach finished 8-3 to advance to the State 3A Playoffs, and won the 3A Metro League Valley Division title with a perfect 5-0 record.
 
His teammates Darrien Sampson and Frederick Roberson also signed with the Eagles, and their coach at Rainier Beach was Darrien's father, Corey Sampson. Stell also plays basketball for Rainier Beach, which won the State 3A title his sophomore season and finished 23-6 after beating O'Dea 70-49 for the title.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in political science at EWU. Born 5/27/2000 in Olympia, Wash., Calif. Parents are Michael Johnson and Champale Washington. Nicknames are "Stelly" and "Manny." Is a first-generation college student in his family.
 
 
 

Tre Weed – S – 6-0 – 190 – Sumner, Wash. / Sumner HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Weed: "We're initially recruiting him as a safety, but he has kick return skills, punt return skills and he has ball-in-his-hands skills. He has a lot of position flexibility and a lot of opportunities ahead of him. He played great football as a senior in high school and scored a lot of touchdowns in many different ways. He played both sides of the football – he's an extraordinary athlete, an extraordinary person and has an extraordinary football IQ. He plays on the backend of one of the best defenses in the state. They are very physical and Coach Ross does a great job there. Tre has bought into that on defense, and from an offensive standpoint he's dynamic. I attended a game in the fall and on the first play or two he went for 50 on a fly sweep."
 
Will graduate from Sumner HS in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "Red Chip" selection as one of the top 16 prospects in the state of Washington. He was rated as a three-star recruit and the 12th best prospect in the state of Washington by 247sports.com and scout.com. He was a two-star prospect on rivals.com. Weed twice earned Tacoma News Tribune All-Area honors after helping Sumner to the semifinals of the semifinals of the State 4A Playoffs his junior and senior seasons.
 
Including playoffs, he finished his career with 5,980 all-purpose yards, 83 touchdowns and 19 interceptions. He helped Sumner win 33 of 38 games (87 percent), including a 22-2 record (92 percent) in league games. In regular season games, he had 4,606 all-purpose yards in his career (139.6) and scored 69 total touchdowns, and averaged 11.5 yards every time he touched the ball. He had six interception returns for touchdowns, finishing with a total of 16 interceptions for 390 yards (24.4 per return). Weed also finished his career with 103 total tackles and a pair of sacks. He rushed for 2,235 yards (8.0 per carry) and 29 touchdowns; caught 99 passes for 1,670 yards (16.9 per catch) and 30 scores; had 274 yards and a touchdown on kickoff returns (21.1 average) and 37 yards on punt returns (12.3 per return). In addition, he completed all three of the passes he attempted for 136 yards and a TD.
 
As a senior, he earned All-State honors as an all-purpose player from the Tacoma News-Tribune, including schools from all classifications. He was also a first team 4A All-State selection as an all-purpose player by the Associated Press. He was the 4A South Puget Sound League MVP. Weed finished with 138 carries for 1,101 yards and 14 touchdowns rushing; he had another 50 catches for 708 yards and 13 TDs receiving; and he picked off eight passes his senior season. He finished with 2,129 all-purpose yards for the season with 33 total touchdowns. He added 55 yards on kickoff returns and 228 yards on eight interceptions (28.5 average and three TDs). He also finished with 25 tackles. He scored five touchdowns and added an interception in Sumner's 49-13 win over Bonney Lake. Weed had 271 total yards with a rushing TD, receiving TD and interception return for a score for Sumner in a 45-14 victory over Bellarmine Prep. Weed then had 226 all-purpose yards on nine touches (25.1 average) in a win over Monroe in the quarterfinals of the State 4A Playoffs. He had an 85-yard interception return for a TD, a 61-yard rushing TD and a 34-yard receiving TD. Sumner's season came to an end with a 10-0 loss to eventual state runner-up Woodinville in the semifinals. The Spartans finished the season 10-3 and 6-2 in the 4A South Puget Sound League.
 
As a junior, Weed had 1,835 all-purpose yards and scored a total of 26 touchdowns on a team that also included Stanford signee Connor Wedington. Weed rushed for 951 yards (7.8 per carry) and 13 touchdowns, with four performances of at least 100 yards. He also caught 28 passes for 585 yards and 10 more scores, and added 167 yards on kickoff returns (23.9 per return and a TD) and 132 on six interceptions (22.0 average and two TDs). He also finished with 55 tackles and a pair of sacks. The Spartans lost to eventual state champion Camas in the semifinals of the State 4A Playoffs. That was the team's lone loss of the season in 13 games, including a perfect 8-0 record to win the 4A SPSL title.
 
In his sophomore season, Weed had 200 yards and two touchdowns rushing (10.0 per carry), and caught 25 passes for 435 yards and seven scores. He also had a pair of interceptions for 30 yards and a touchdown, 23 total tackles, and averaged 26.0 on two kickoff returns. Sumner was 11-1 overall and won its first of two straight league titles, winning the 3A South Puget Sound League title with a perfect 8-0 record. Their lone loss of the season was a 28-21 loss to Bishop Blanchet in the first round of the State 3A Playoffs.
 
His coach at Sumner was Keith Ross. He also competed in track and field for Sumner, helping the school's 4x100 relay team place second at the State 4A Championships in 2017 with a 42.15 time.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in business at EWU. Born 9/1/99 in Auburn, Wash. Parents are Tara and Daniel Weed. Nickname is "Tre-Tre".
 
 
 

***Aiden Nellor – TE – 6-4 – 220 – Vancouver, Wash. / Union HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Nellor: "Aiden was another of the many players who were in your camps. He's long and maybe closer to 6-5 than 6-4. He's a hooper and plays on a highly-successful Union team. We believe he'll end up at 240 or 245, and he's an end-line blocker. But we also believe he can move into the backfield and block or we can split him out. He's a multi-faceted player. When you recruit tight ends you look for players who can play multiple locations so you don't have to substitute players in and out. We think Aiden fits that bill and we're excited about him. He had other suitors from other schools who were very interested in him. We're excited and happy to have him in our family. His home environment is awesome and his high school coach is a good buddy of ours, so we know he's been coached well in high school. And he knows how to win."
 
Will graduate from Union HS in 2018. He is listed as a two-star recruit by 247sports.com.
 
As a senior, he earned All-Region honors from the Vancouver Columbian on defense after earning first team All-4A Greater St. Helens League honors as both a tight end and defensive lineman. He caught 18 passes for 286 yards and four touchdowns, and also had 22 tackles, a sack and a fumble recovery on defense. He also had 21 pancake blocks. He helped Union to the 4A GSL title with a 4-0 record and a 9-2 overall mark. The Titans lost to Sumner 42-14 in the first round of the State 4A Playoffs.
 
He also earned first team All-GSL honors as a defensive end in his junior season. He was an honorable mention selection as a sophomore.
 
He also played basketball at Union, and helped the Titans to a league title and runner-up finish at the State 4A Tournament in 2017. His high school teammate Zion Fa'aopega also will join the Eagles in fall of 2018. They were coached at Union by Rory Rosenbach.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in business at EWU. Born 12/9/99 in Vancouver, Wash. Parents are Misty and Matt Nellor. Nickname is "Papa Nell."
 
 

***Isaiah Lewis – RB, 6-0, 200, Monroe, Wash. / Monroe HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Lewis: "The Monroe Bearcats attended our camp, and it kind of substantiated some things we saw before that time. We feel he is a player who has some position flexibility. He can be a linebacker, but right now he looks like he'll start out as a running back. He may find himself helping out on the defensive side of the ball at some point, but we'll let that play out. He's big and he'll get downhill once the ball gets into his hands. He's going to meet you at the hole and then you'll have to do some work to bring him down. He played on a talented and well-coached football team in high school, and they made some noise in the playoffs, so he also knows how to win. His high school teammate also signed with us, so we'll connect those dots when August comes around."
 
Will graduate from Monroe HS in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington. Monroe enjoyed its most success in school history in winning 33 games in four seasons, including 10 in 2017.
 
As a senior, he earned first team 4A All-State honors as a running back from Associated Press. He was the Offensive Player of the Year on the Everett Herald All-Area team. He had 271 carries for a school-record 2,134 rushing yards (7.8 per carry and 177.8 per game) and 25 touchdowns.  He also had 42 catches for 394 yards receiving and three touchdowns for a total of 2,528 yards and 28 touchdowns on offense. Defensively, he had 18 total tackles and one interception that he returned 65 yards. In 12 games in 2017, he had 11 100-yard rushing games and four with at least 200, with a high of 287 yards (on 23 carries) in a season-opening win against Meadowdale.  Lewis touched the ball an incredible 50 times in Monroe's first-round game in the State 4A Playoffs, rushing 46 times for 229 yards and catching four passes for 25 yards.  That 21-14 victory was Monroe's first state football playoff win in school history. The Bearcats finished as the runner-up in the 4A Wesco League with a 7-1 record, and closed the year 10-2 after a 56-14 loss to Sumner in the quarterfinals of the playoffs.
 
As a junior, he played sparingly at running back and rushed just three times for 62 yards and a touchdown, and caught nine passes for 176 yards and another score. He had seven total tackles as a junior when Monroe was 9-2 overall and 6-1 in the league, and also advanced to the quarterfinals of the 4A State Playoffs. His team beat Auburn-Riverside 48-28 before falling 58-42 to Sumner in the quarterfinals. Monroe was making its first appearance in the state playoffs in 20 years.
 
Lewis also had 54 tackles with 7 1/2 sacks as sophomore, and was on the Monroe roster as a freshman. The Bearkcats had records of 7-3 overall and 5-2 in the Wesco in 2015, and 7-4 and 5-2 in 2014.
 
His high school teammate Joshua Jerome helped block for Lewis and will also join the Eagles in fall of 2018. Jerome's brother, J.J. Jerome, rushed for 2,050 yards and 27 touchdowns as a senior in the fall of 2016.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in kinesiology at EWU. Born 12/1/99 in Torrance, Calif. Parents are Tabitha and Avery Lewis.
 
 

DECEMBER LOI SIGNING DAY . . .

Eagles Sign Seven in First-Ever December Signing Period

 
Eastern's first high school letter of intent signing class includes six of seven signees from the state of Washington, in addition to a transfer from Navy
 

It's a new time for signing players, but the Eastern Washington University football team went with the flow and took advantage.
 
Signing a collection of talent that includes a pair of All-State selections from the state of Washington, the Eagles signed seven high school players to national letters of intent on Dec. 20 to attend EWU and play for the school next fall.
 
The signees included a pair of All-State selections from Washington – defensive tackle Joshua Jerome out of Monroe and wide receiver Champ Grayson from Kamiakin. The Eagles also signed quarterback Simon Burkett from Meridian High School in Bellingham, Wash., and a local product in offensive lineman Risone Ama out of Mt. Spokane HS.
 
Best and his coaching staff signed a trio of offensive linemen and a pair on the defensive line as well.
 
"We're really excited about these players, and it's new because it's the inaugural year for this December signing period," said Eastern head coach Aaron Best.
 
The other high school players signed from the state of Washington included defensive end Corbin Hartsock from Olympia (Wash.) HS, and offensive lineman Charlie Baumann from Newport High School in Bellevue, Wash. Baumann's older brother, Conner Baumann, will be a senior for the Eagles in 2018 when Charlie arrives.
 
The lone out-of-state product was offensive lineman Brad Godwin from Redlands (Calif.) High School. Eastern also announced that Dean Sise will transfer from Navy to play for the Eagles as a rover on defense. Sise was an All-State selection as a senior in 2016 at Juanita High School in Kirkland, Wash. Sise signed a financial aid agreement and has been admitted and confirmed his attendance at EWU starting in winter quarter of 2018.
 
"What I like about this group of signees in December is the fact these players know they want to be Eagles," said Best. "So this opportunity allows them to sign early and work on school, work on their winter sports, work on being a son and work on being a brother, and not have to worry about any more communications or recruiting calls from other schools. Heading into their holiday break they can focus on the things they want to focus on. This opportunity allows them to get their signing out of the way when they know they already want to come here."
 
"Their excitement has led them to tell us they want to be a part of Eastern Football in December rather than wait until February," added Best. "We love the fact they are allowed to make this official and tell the world where they are going prior to February."
 
 

Risone Ama OL 6-4 285 Spokane, Wash. / Mt. Spokane HS '18
Charlie Baumann OL 6-5 275 Bellevue, Wash. / Newport HS '18
Simon Burkett QB 6-3 185 Bellingham, Wash. / Meridian HS '18
Brad Godwin OL 6-6 265 Redlands, Calif. / Redlands HS '18
Champ Grayson WR 6-2 180 Kennewick, Wash. / Kamiakin HS '18
Corbin Hartsock DE 6-5 235 Olympia, Wash. / Olympia HS '18
Joshua Jerome DL 6-1 275 Monroe, Wash. / Monroe HS '18
***Dean Sise Rover 6-2 205 Kirkland, Wash. / Juanita HS '17 & Navy

***Transfer (signed a financial aid agreement and has been admitted and confirmed his attendance at EWU)
 
Pronunciations
Risone Ama – "Rih-sew-nay Ah-mah"
Sise – "Sice"
 

Risone Ama – OL – 6-4 – 285 – Spokane, Wash. / Mt. Spokane HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Ama: "He's an offensive lineman, and some people think he can be a defensive lineman. He grew a ton from his junior to senior season. I think his best football ahead of him is on the offensive side, and when we saw him at our camp he displayed huge growth in a year. Because we are methodical in our recruiting, we are able to see the physical development of 16 and 17 year olds. We try to recruit Spokane players as much as we can to have a local flavor. He has great parents and all the goods and makings to be a great interior offensive lineman. We'll start him at guard and see which side he feels more comfortable. His Mt. Spokane Wildcats were perennial winners, and we're excited to have him onboard."
 
Will graduate from Mt. Spokane High School in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington. He was rated by 247sports.com as a 2-star recruit and the No. 51 prospect in the state of Washington. Rivals.com rated him as a 2-star recruit. He was a three-time selection on All-Greater Spokane League teams while playing for the Wildcats.
 
As a senior, Ama was a first team All-3A Greater Spokane League selection as an offensive lineman. He helped lead Mt. Spokane to an 8-3 record and a berth in the State 3A Playoffs. The Wildcats lost 28-21 in the first round to eventual state runner-up Rainier Beach.
 
As a junior, Ama also earned first team All-GSL honors as an offensive lineman as Mt. Spokane finished 4-6. The Wildcats advanced to the State 3A Playoffs that season as well. In his sophomore season, he was honorable mention All-GSL, also as an offensive lineman. Mt. Spokane was 8-2, and lost a cross-over game to Kennewick at the end of the year that cost the Wildcats a state berth.
 
Coached at Mt. Spokane by former Eagle linebacker Terry Cloer (1994-95), who was given 3A GSL Coach of the Year honors in both 2015 and 2017. Ama also competed in track and field in high school.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in business management at EWU. Born 6/4/2000 in Kennewick, Wash. Parents are Aifala and Jennipher Ama. Nickname is "Rizzo."
 
 
 

Charlie Baumann – OL - 6-5 – 275 - Bellevue, Wash. / Newport HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Baumann: "We have been excited about Charlie since the days of recruiting his older brother Conner to campus a few years back. He will be a great addition to our interior offensive line at guard. He has aspirations of playing early in his career and he is gifted enough to do that following what will probably be a redshirt year. Charlie has a tough, in-your-face approach to his game, and that is what sets him apart from other offensive linemen we looked at. He's another multi-sport student athlete in high school. His success on the wrestling mat has allowed him to excel playing a style of play along the offensive line that we covet here at EWU. He's a great family person that also excels in the classroom."
 
Will graduate from Newport HS in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington. He joins Eastern alongside his brother Conner, who will be a senior defensive end for the Eagles in the 2018 season. Charlie was a 2-star recruit as rated by 247sports.com, which also ranks him as the 46th best high school recruit in the state of Washington. 
 
As a senior in 2017, he was a first team All-KingCo 4A League selection as a defensive lineman and second team pick as an offensive lineman. He had 55 tackles and six sacks in helping Newport finish 5-5.
 
He also wrestles at Newport, and advance to the Mat Classic 4A Tournament as a junior. He won the 285-pound title at the KingCo 4A Championships.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in business at Eastern. Born 2/24/00 in Redmond, Wash. His parents are Bradley and Tina Baumann. Conner's brother, Conner, enters his senior season at Eastern in 2018 with 54 career tackles and two sacks in 35 career games. He also played as a fullback during his redshirt freshman season in 2014-15.
 
 

Simon Burkett – QB – 6-3 – 185 – Bellingham, Wash. / Meridian HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Burkett: "He's a dual-threat quarterback who can pass when needed and extend plays when needed. He's long, and will be good in our running game and our run-pass option schemes. He willed his team to the state championship game and played for legendary coach Bob Ames, so we're excited to see Simon in an Eagle uniform. He came to our quarterback camp, so we were able to see him up close and personal meet his family. He was elated to have Eastern as his landing spot after high school."
 
Will graduate from Meridian HS in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington. He was rated by 247sports.com as a 3-star recruit and the No. 27 prospect in the state of Washington. Rivals.com rated him as a 2-star recruit. Burkett committed to Eastern in August of 2017 before finishing his high school career with 7,658 yards and 79 touchdowns passing, and 1,564 yards and 29 touchdowns rushing in 34 games played. He completed 56.9 percent of his passes (527-of-927) with 30 interceptions, and also caught four passes for 38 yards. His yardage total in his career was a league record. He served as a team captain as a senior, junior and sophomore.
 
As a senior, he was selected as the state of Washington Class 1A MVP and a first team All-State selection as a quarterback by the Associated Press. Burkett was the MVP of the 1A Northwest Conference. He passed for 3,868 yards (276.3 per game) and 45 TDs passing and had a team-high 623 yards and 12 scores on the ground. He completed 58.0 percent of his passes (235-of-405), breaking his own Whatcom County record for attempts and completions. He led Meridian to a 13-1 record overall, including a perfect 6-0 mark in the 1A Northwest Conference. The Trojans lost 33-27 in the State 1A championship game in the Tacoma Dome to top-ranked Royal, which won its third-straight title. Burkett's 10-yard touchdown run with 11:22 remaining tied the game at 27-27, but Royal had two sacks of Burkett in the final seven minutes. Burkett passed for 305 yards and two touchdowns, and added two more scores on the ground. At the Northwest 9 quarterback camp in Kirkland, Wash., in summer of 2017, Burkett had the third-best vertical jump mark (38-5), the fourth-best broad jump (9-1) and tied for fifth-best in the 3-cone shuttle (4.25 seconds).
 
As a junior team captain, he shared first team All-Northwest Conference 1A honors along with Montana State commit Casey Bauman from Nooksack Valley. Burkett led Meridian to a 7-7 record as the Trojans clinched a .500 season by winning a pair of games in the State 1A Playoffs. Meridian beat Kings 17-14 and Cascade Christian 34-21 before falling to Connell 56-21 in the quarterfinals. Burkett attempted a Whatcom County record 367 passes, completing 208 of them for a 56.7 percent completion rate. He finished with 2,623 yards and 20 touchdowns through the air, and had another 618 yards and 12 scores on the ground. As a defensive back, he finished the season with three interceptions and returned one for a TD.
 
He played in eight games as a sophomore team captain and completed 84-of-155 passes (54.2 percent) for 1,167 yards and 14 touchdowns, as well as 323 rushing yards with five TDs. He also had an interception on defense. The Trojans advanced to the State 1A Playoffs and finished 6-5.
 
He played for long-time Meridian coach Bob Ames, whose 320 career wins in 44 seasons (through 2017) trails former Tumwater coach Sid Otton (394) and O'Dea's Monte Kohler (324) for most wins in state history. Eastern All-Big Sky center Spencer Blackburn also played for Ames at Meridian and graduated in 2014.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in engineering at EWU. Born 9/18/99 in Bellingham, Wash. Parents are Rob and Heidi Burkett. His grandfather, Mike Hopley, lettered for Eastern in basketball in 1972 and was formerly from Burlington, Wash.


 

Brad Godwin – OL – 6-6 – 265 - Redlands HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Godwin: "The first thing that stood out on video was how well he moves for his size. He's athletic and long in terms of his arms and legs, and we will use him at one of the tackle positions. He plays through the whistle. He's very studious in regards to Eastern – he knows everything, and I mean everything, about our football program and school. He's going to be good, but it's up to him if he wants to be great. It's a matter of putting all the pieces together when he gets here on campus. We're very excited to sign him, and went a little further south than we normally do for an offensive lineman."
 
Will graduate from Redlands HS in 2018. He was rated by both Rivals.com and 247sports.com as a 2-star recruit.
 
As a senior, he earned first team All-Citrus Belt League honors as an offensive lineman, and was his team's offensive line MVP. He blocked for team that averaged 15.8 points and 306.3 yards of total offense per game, with averages of 172.2 passing yards and 134.1 rushing. He helped the Terriers finish 4-6 overall and 3-4 in the Citrus Belt League in his senior season.
 
In his junior season, he blocked for team that averaged 32.3 points and 412.2 yards of total offense, including 236.5 passing yards and 175.7 rushing yards.
 
Was coached at Redlands by Derrick Dial. Godwin was a two-year varsity starter in football and also competed for the track and field team.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in political science at EWU. Born 5/31/2000 in Riverside, Calif. Parents are Brad Godwin III and Heather Carmody.
 
 
 

Champ Grayson – WR – 6-2 – 180 - Kennewick, Wash. / Kamiakin HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Grayson: "We love his competitiveness and he's an energized individual. He easily dunks the basketball, so he easily goes up to get the football. When the ball is in the air, it's not a 50-50 ball to him. It's about a 90-10 ball and he'd argue that its 100 to zero --- it's his ball and nobody else's. He played for a state championship team as a junior and we're excited to get another Kamiakin Brave in the mix. We're excited about his potential for growth both inside and outside – we think he can be versatile on offense. He can run screens, run deep, run intermediate routes and run slants, and he's a big, physical player. He'll be similar to the long receivers we've had over the years who we have been very pleased with."
 
Will graduate from Kamiakin HS in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington.
 
As a senior, he earned All-State honors as a wide receiver from the Tacoma News-Tribune, including schools from all classifications. He was also a first team 3A All-State choice by the Associated Press. He earned first team All-Mid-Columbia Conference honors as a wide receiver, defensive back and kick returner. In conference games only, he caught a league-leading 56 passes for 902 yards and nine touchdowns. He had a league-leading 319 punt return yards, averaging 8.6 yards on 37 returns. His 1,273 all-purpose yards were second in the league and his 11 total touchdowns were fourth. His totals on the season included 60 catches, 1,418 all-purpose yards, 14 touchdowns, three interceptions, two forced fumbles and a fumble recovery.
 
As a junior, he helped Kamiakin to its first-ever State 3A title and the first for a high school in the city of Kennewick. The Braves beat O'Dea 14-7 in overtime to capture the first 3A title for a team east of the Cascade Mountains since 1999. Kamiakin lost only to 4A schools (Chiawana and Richland) during the league season, then won its first three playoff games by an average of more than 33 points per game prior to a 30-27 semifinal win over Eastside Catholic. Grayson averaged 12.0 yards on five punt returns during the league season, and played as a wide receiver and linebacker. He was also on the roster as a sophomore wide receiver/defensive back.
 
He was coached at Kamiakin by Scott Biglin. His former high school teammates Wyatt Musser and Darreon Moore graduated from Kamiakin in 2017 and redshirted for the Eagles that fall. Grayson also lettered in basketball at Kamiakin.
 
Personal: Undecided on a possible major at EWU. Born 8/14/99 in Kennewick, Wash. Parents are Dan and Tina Grayson. Dan was an All-America linebacker at Washington State and was a seventh-round draft choice by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 1990 National Football League draft. He was also with the San Francisco 49ers in the NFL, and played in the Canadian Football League in 1992 for Saskatchewan. Champ's cousin, Garrett Grayson, currently plays as a backup quarterback for the Atlanta Falcons after he was with the New Orleans Saints in 2015. He played at Colorado State for former Eastern player and assistant coach Jim McElwain. Garrett passed for more than 10,000 yards at Heritage High School in Vancouver, Wash.
 
 
 

Corbin Hartsock – DE – 6-5 – 235 – Olympia, Wash. / Olympia HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Hartsock: "We were excited enough about him as a junior that we felt he would make us better not only on the field but in the locker room. He is a great person and another one of the signees we have who are better people than they are players – and they are pretty good players. We'll start him on the defensive line and see where he goes from there. He was a very versatile player as a junior and we like what he looked like on video. He has length and flexibility, and still has room to grow physically. He's very driven having lost his senior year because of an injury, but he was basically an assistant coach for his teammates during the 2017 campaign. He's won a ton of games in his high school career, so we don't have to teach him how to win. He has great parents and we're excited to have him onboard."
 
Will graduate from Olympia HS in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington. Committed to Eastern in August. He tore his ACL in June and missed the 2017 high school football season. He was rated by 247sports.com as the No. 58 prospect in the state of Washington.
 
As a junior, he was selected to the Olympian All-Area team as a first team tight end. He was a first team All-South Puget Sound League tight end and earned second team honors as a defensive lineman. He also was his team's defensive MVP. Hartsock had 15 catches for 264 yards and two touchdowns, and recorded 66 tackles (18 for losses) and nine sacks as a defensive end. He helped lead the Bears to a 7-3 record and the first round of the State 4A Playoffs where it lost to Skyview (38-27).
 
As a sophomore, Olympia was 7-3 in his sophomore season and 6-4 when he was a freshman. The Bears advanced to the playoffs both seasons. Hartsock's coach at Olympia was Steve Davis.
 
Personal: Interested in majoring in political science at EWU. Born 5/31/2000 in Olympia, Wash. Parents are Sean and DeNay Hartsock.
 
 

 
Joshua Jerome – DL – 6-1 – 275 – Monroe, Wash. / Monroe HS '18

Head Coach Aaron Best on Jerome: "He has a way about him that reminds me of an offensive lineman, but has a defensive mentality and plays great on the defensive line. Coach (Brian) Strandley has been interested in him for a couple of years it seems like, and every time we talk about defensive tackles they are compared to Joshua Jerome. He's not the tallest, sturdiest or best looking defensive tackle we've recruited, but I'd put him up there with the toughest defensive tackles we've recruited and played with. He played on both sides of the ball in high school, and he's one of those guys where you hate to play against him but you love to play next to him. He's going to wreak havoc on guards and centers throughout his career, and he's one of those EKG over-achiever – he plays bigger than his size indicates."
 
Will graduate from Monroe HS in 2018. He was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington. He was rated by 247sports.com as a 2-star recruit and the No. 60 prospect in the state of Washington. Rivals.com also rated him as a 2-star recruit. Committed to Eastern in May of 2017. In his 36-game high school career, he had 192 total tackles with 18 1/2 sacks, six forced fumbles, six recoveries and three passes broken up. He was also credited with 36 pancake blocks as an offensive lineman in his final two years in the program. He blocked for 2,000-yard rushers in 2016 (his brother J.J.) and in 2017 (his fellow EWU recruit Isaiah Lewis). Monroe enjoyed its most success in school history in winning 33 games in four seasons, including 10 in 2017.
 
As a senior, he earned All-State honors as an offensive lineman from the Tacoma News-Tribune, including schools from all classifications. He was also a first team 4A All-State selection as an offensive lineman by Associated Press. Jerome also earned All-Area honors from the Everett Herald as an offensive lineman for the second-straight year after earning first team All-Wesco 4A honors. He had 87 tackles as a senior with eight sacks, four fumble recoveries and two forced fumbles. On offense, he helped block for teammate Isaiah Lewis, who rushed for 2,134 yards as Monroe finished 10-2 overall and 6-1 in the 4A Wesco League. The Bearcats beat Puyallup 21-14 in the 4A State Playoffs before falling 56-14 to Sumner in the quarterfinals.

As a junior in 2016, Jerome earned All-Area honors from the Everett Herald as an offensive lineman for the second-straight year after earning first team All-Wesco 4A honors. He had 41 tackles, 6 1/2 sacks and a pair of forced fumbles. He had 28 pancake blocks as he paved the way for his older brother J.J. Jerome to rush for 2,050 yards. Monroe was 9-2 overall and 6-1 in the league, and also advanced to the quarterfinals of the 4A State Playoffs. His team beat Auburn-Riverside 48-28 before falling 58-42 to Sumner in the quarterfinals. Monroe was making its first appearance in the state playoffs in 20 years.
 
He also had 41 tackles as a sophomore with three sacks, and 23 tackles and a sack as a freshman. Monroe had records of 7-3 overall and 5-2 in the Wesco in 2015, and 7-4 and 5-2 in 2014. His high school teammate Isaiah Lewis is also headed for EWU, as both players were coached at Monroe by Michael Bumpas.
 
Personal: Interested in studies that will help him become a fire fighter after he leaves EWU. Born 11/9/1999 in Monroe, Wash., Calif. Parents are Gregg Jerome and Dana Davis. Is a first generation college student in his family.
 
 
 

Dean Sise – Rover - 6-2 – 205 - Kirkland, Wash. / Juanita HS '17 & Navy

Head Coach Aaron Best on Sise: "He felt it was time for a change early on in his career and we were fortunate to be his next decision. We'll start him out at rover, so he'll be out covering slot receivers and defending both the pass and the run. He won a ton of games in his high school career and we have been tracking him for a lot of years. He's a familiar face to us and we're excited to see where he will make us better. He's versatile player – he could play at safety, linebacker and rover, and contribute on special teams. Coach Jeff Schmedding has been talking about him for a long time. We couldn't be happier that he has the opportunity to come to Eastern and is making this his next destination. We don't look for a lot of transfers unless they fit a true need and fit into our locker room. We felt Dean was a no-brainer, and we tried to make this happen."
 
Sise joins Eastern as a transfer from the Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md. He has signed a financial aid agreement and has been admitted and confirmed his attendance at EWU, beginning in winter quarter of 2018. Recruiting by most Northwest colleges, he originally took recruiting visits to Hawai'i and Washington State before joining the Midshipmen. Coming out of high school, he was named by the Seattle Times as a "White Chip" selection as one of the top 100 prospects in the state of Washington. He was a 2-star recruit as rated by 247sports.com.
 
Sise played in four games – all victories -- as a true freshman in 2017 for Navy, which finished the year 6-6 and 4-4 in the American Athletic Conference. He had two tackles, one versus Cincinnati (9/23/17) and one in the team's next game versus Tulsa (9/30/17) when he suffered a concussion and missed the rest of the season.
 
Graduated from Juanita High School in 2017. As a senior in 2016, he earned All-State honors and was selected to play in the Blue-Grey All-American Bowl and All-State Game. He earned All-KingCo Conference honors as a first team linebacker and second team wide receiver. He had 59 tackles as a senior with four interceptions, three forced fumbles and a pair of sacks. He also caught 40 passes for 503 yards and six touchdowns as a senior, with career totals of 62 for 779 yards and 10 scores.
 
The Rebels finished 9-3 overall and 5-1 in his junior season in 2015, beating Columbia River 57-7 in the first round of the State 3A Playoffs before bowing out in the quarterfinals. He was coached at Juanita by Lele Te'o.
 
He also was a three-time state qualifier in track and field, finishing tenth in the long jump and helping his school finish third in the 4x100 Relay in his sophomore season in 2015. He also advanced to the state meet in the long jump as a senior. He had bests of 21-6 1/4 in the long jump, 11.34 in the 100 and 23.20 in the 200.
 
Personal: Intends on majoring in communications at Eastern. Born 9/13/98 in Bellevue, Wash. His parents are Robert Sise and Joanna Levin. His father played soccer at Colorado

Powered by Frankly
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2018 SWXRN. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.