Stockton Receiver Joins the Bears

Stockton Receiver Joins the Bears

Early in the recruiting process, the Bears saw something in a Stockton receiver and made him one of the earliest offerees in the Class of '08. Some 7 months later, he joined the list of players committed to the Bears.

Stagg (Stockton) High School receiver L.J. Washington was one of the most productive receivers in the ultra-competitive Central Valley in '07. The 6-0/180 Washington was the clear leader on his Stagg squad, averaging an amazing 18 yards per catch, leading the Central Section with 1144 yards on the year on 63 receptions along with 18 touchdowns overall.

Washington also excelled on defense at DB, with 56 tackles, 2 interceptions, 2 sacks and 4 fumble recoveries on the year.

The speedy (4.45 forty) Washington took his time considering his offer, visiting throughout the year while taking in games against Tennessee, Washington State and USC.

Washington was offered as an "athlete," meaning he was being considered for several positions. But his path became clearer when Cal Head Coach Jeff Tedford made it clear to Washington this weekend that the Bears liked him as a receiver, his position of choice.

"They offered me before the season," said Washington. "But I was offered as an athlete.

"Then I had a personal meeting with Coach Tedford this morning towards the end of my visit and Coach Tedford told me that they watched me a lot this season and that they liked me as a receiver so that made my decision easier."

Washington notes that his sure hands are one of the strengths of his game as well as his ability to pick up yards after the catch.

"I played running back most of my life so I know what to do with the ball once I get it in my hands," said Washington. "Coach Tedford also likes my stride and how I pull away from the defense after I catch the ball and I've got good vision, too.

"Coach Tedford and Coach Alamar, my lead recruiter, have always treated me well and made me feel at home when I visited or when they talked to me. Coach Alamar checks on me whenever he can."

Washington was hosted by redshirt frosh running back Shane Vereen and noted that the players that visited along with him enjoyed their visits and got to know each other well.

Another Central Valley receiver made the visit as well in Merced receiver Jarrett Sparks.

Although Washington and Sparks never faced off in person, Washington was well aware of Sparks and tracked his progress as the two star wr's squared off for the overall lead in receiving yards in the Central Section.

Washington plans to come in for Cal's Summer Bridge program next summer after signing his Letter of Intent in February.

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