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Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Two-way ATH Porchivina gains interest

By Erik McKinney

Petaluma (Calif.) Casa Grande High School was a must-stop location for college coaches last season, as Elijah Qualls wowed onlookers with his ability to play defensive tackle and running back. Qualls eventually signed with Washington, but the attention he earned last spring helped shed some light on John Porchivina, who could be asked to pick up some of the slack left by Qualls' departure.

As a junior in his first year at Casa Grande, Porchivina rushed for 651 yards and nine touchdowns, caught eight passes for 116 yards and two touchdowns, and racked up 49 tackles and two sacks defensively. The 6-foot, 210-pound two-way threat picked up his first offer, from Idaho, several weeks ago and said he learned plenty from Qualls, both on and off the field.

"It was huge last year, having Elijah," Porchivina said. "It helped get my name out there before I ever played a down of football at Casa Grande. Seeing how coaches came in and how he handled himself really helped me understand what I need to do to impress these coaches."

Porchivina is doing a good job of that so far, as Arizona, Arizona State, Boise State, California, Colorado, San Diego State, San Jose State, Utah, Washington and Washington State have all expressed interest. He said the Buffaloes and Cougars have been recruiting him the hardest, and he spoke to Colorado coaches on Tuesday.

California, Colorado, San Diego State, San Jose State and Washington are recruiting Porchivina as a fullback -- a change Washington made recently -- while the rest of the schools see him on the defensive side of the ball.

"I definitely love carrying the ball," he said. "That's what I've been doing since I was 7-years-old. But I just love to play football. If I get to play, even if it's safety or linebacker, that's perfect with me."

At this point, Porchivina said it will likely take a visit or a camp performance to move one of the Pac-12 schools from showing interest to offering.

"All the schools love my highlight tape," he said. "They just want to see me move in person, to see how I run and what kind of speed I have."

The only set plan for Porchivina at this time is to visit Colorado on April 13 for the Buffs' junior day, but he said he would like to make other visits as well. The first one will be this weekend, where he will attend junior day either at Cal or San Jose State. He added that he will probably visit Arizona State and Oregon State as well. He will also make a return trip to Colorado this summer, to participate in a camp.