Utah State football coach Gary Andersen has spent the last few days in Hawaii, visiting with potential recruits and firming up the commitments made from others.
Wednesday night, according to a source close to the program, Andersen got a verbal commitment from Punahou High safety Brian Suite — getting a recruit the hometown Warriors had also made an offer to.
Suite is a 6-foot-2, 180-pound safety with a big hit style of play.
He was part of a six-man group of recruits to visit Utah State last weekend and is the fifth to pledge his services to the Aggies. Of that group, only V.J. Fehoko, who is visiting Utah this week and has an offer from the Utes, hasn’t told Andersen he would sign with USU.
Getting Suite, as well as a few other Hawaii players, may make Vehoko think long and hard about USU.
“It won’t hurt,” the source at USU said. “We are in pretty good with him. He really enjoyed his visit. This place, and the new facilities we have really sell themselves. We’ve got some great recruiters on this staff and we’re a beating some good schools for some really good kids.”
Andersen, the source said, is returning to Utah on Thursday and will spend the weekend working the phones and trying to firm up all the commitments he’s received.
Then it will be time for one last push before signing day. The source said no recruits are scheduled to be brought in to Logan this weekend. But the following weekend will see a load of recruits visit USU’s campus, tour facilities, meet with coaches and academic staff and take in a Utah State basketball game. Many of those, the source said, have already made verbal commitments to USU but will be given one last hard sell before they have a chance to reconsider.
“We’re still swinging on a lot of kids some people never thought we would have a chance at,” the source said. “We’re making progress.”
Among the recruits being brought to Logan next week are Florida cornerback Nevin Lawson, a prior commit, and some other kids from Texas and the southeastern states.
“We’ll probably have a few sign with us after the date,” the source said. “There are a lot of really good kids that kind of fall through the cracks. If you’re patient, you can get some of those kids.”
The source said some of the late coaching changes at bigger schools around the country have left many big-time athletes reconsidering their options. USU, the source said, is aware of its spot in the ‘pecking order’ but isn’t afraid of trying to scoop up a few of those players.
“We got some last year and they were all impact players for us,” the source said. “We’ll always save a spot or two for kids like that.”