During each of Washington’s wins over top-10 teams, Mason Stone had the opportunity to stand on the Huskies' sideline before the game.
The 6-foot, 170-pound safety talked with his teammate Devante Downs -- a junior running back with a Washington offer -- about what it would be like to have the opportunity to play in front of 60,000 fans in a purple-and-gold uniform.
After the Huskies’ coaching staff recently invited Stone to join the program as a preferred walk-on, he has his chance.
“It’s just surreal,” Stone said. “I’ve grown up watching this in the stands. Now I’m on the sidelines next to these guys thinking the opportunity is here if I want it. It’s crazy. They are definitely on the rise. It’s exciting to think about the opportunity that is ahead of me.”
While Stone has yet to land any scholarship offers, he did talk to Idaho recruiting coordinator Torey Hunter on Monday. Stone said the Vandals plan to offer him a scholarship, but can’t make any promises at this point because of changes to the coaching staff.
“I really like coach Hunter,” Stone said. “They’ve pretty much offered me the most so far out of everybody.”
Stone is also hearing from Portland State, Eastern Washington, Boise State, Utah and Washington State. He is reaping the benefits of a strong senior season.
“I’ve been working a lot in the offseason and, finally, the season came up and I performed at a fairly high level, I would like to believe,” Stone said. “Now everything is starting to pick up only a week or two after the season.
“It’s exciting. It’s all coming together like I had hoped.”
No matter what happens, Stone will give serious thought to becoming a walk-on at Washington.
“There’s a lot to say about UW,” Stone said. “I love them to death. I’m honored that I’m even in the conversation for a scholarship or preferred walk-on scenario. Right now I’m just laying back and letting the recruiting scene take off.
“Regardless of what offers I receive, UW is going to be in the conversation the entire time. I’m just really excited that all of these opportunities are starting to arise. Hopefully everything pans out.”