- Bill Conley
The states of Oregon, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming aren't heavily populated, and the elite players from the area aren't always on the tip of everyone's tongue. However, there are some very good players in the Pacific Northwest, and the area gets recruited by many of the nation's top football programs.
In the past two recruiting classes, the region's No. 1 prospect chose Miami (defensive end Billy Sanders, 2009) and Notre Dame (defensive end Ethan Johnson, 2008).
In the Class of 2010, the three top players from the Pacific Northwest are members of the ESPNU 150 and, once again, the top player is a defensive end. Owamagbe Odighizuwa (Portland, Ore./ David Douglas) has yet to commit, but he can pick from any Pac-10 school as well as Florida. The second-best player in this year's recruiting class, Gabe King (Eugene, Ore./South), is also a defensive end.
In fact, the top 10 players in the area are dominated by linemen on both sides of the ball. Three offensive guards, two tight ends and two defensive ends are among the region's best. Even though there are only three four-star and three-star players in this region for 2010, the top players are very impressive in terms of physique and performance.
Owamagbe Odighizuwa of Portland, Ore., continues the trend of talented pass-rushers in the Pacific Northwest, writes Billy Conley.