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The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

December 30, 2009 at 8:08 PM

Young still coming to UW, looking for redemption

I had a chance today to speak for a while on the phone with the player who may be one of the most intriguing of those who have already committed to become members of UW’s recruiting Class of 2010 — Auburn High’s Chris Young. He is playing Saturday in the Offense-Defense All-American Bowl in Myrtle Beach, S.C.
There’s been some mystery about Young’s status with the Huskies since he was suspended in November for violating the school’s athletic code.
But Young says neither he nor the UW coaches have wavered and that he plans to sign with UW in February.
“Oh yeah, I’m there,” Young said.
Young has returned to active status at Auburn High and is participating with the wrestling team. And he says UW coaches, while upset with his suspension, told him immediately they still wanted him to sign.
“They were pissed,” said Young, who was one of UW’s first commits for this class, giving the word in March. “But at the same time they were like ‘nobody is perfect.’ So they just told me to keep moving forward.”


Young said the facts of his suspension as presented in the initial Seattle Times story were accurate, that it was an incident at the Homecoming Dance at the Auburn High gym.
“Just me being stupid, committing a mistake, and I got in trouble for it,” said Young.
It was a particularly costly suspension for Auburn High, which was regarded as a contender for the 4A state title, with Young having a fabulous season at running back and defensive back, rushing for 1,424 yards and 27 TDs in nine games. Auburn High instead lost in the quarterfinals to Skyview, 34-21.
“It was tough (to watch),” Young said. “Especially going to the game that we lost to Skyview. I was sitting in the bleachers pissed at myself saying ‘man, I could be running all over those guys.”’
But Young also admitted he had no one to blame and that he knows he will have to do some work to repair his image.
“Oh yeah, people definitely look at me differently now,” he said. “So I’ve definitely got something to show others.”
He said he intends to begin doing that next year at UW. While there have also been some rumors that he has some work to do academically to get admitted, Young said he will be a Husky next fall.
“I plan on it,” he said.
He said he specifically has one core class, Physics, that has proved a little troublesome that he will have to pass to get the needed requirements. But he said he’s confident he’ll be able to get it done.
Assuming he makes it to UW for next fall, the question then will be what position Young will play. When he initially committed, Young said UW coaches envisioned him playing safety or outside linebacker.
Now, after the season he had as a running back, he said they have told him he will get his first shot in the backfield.
“Right now, coach Sark (Steve Sarkisian) is saying offense,” Young said. “He wants to try me out at running back and then if he likes me at running back, my guess is he will put me with (Chris) Polk and all the other running backs.”
Young admits he’d rather be on the other side of the ball — some observers had said Young had as much potential as any high school safety in the state since Lawyer Milloy.
“I’d rather play defense,” he said. “There’s just something about offense I don’t like. I just like sticking people on defense.”
But he also said that “whatever helps the team, I’m fully committed to doing. My preference would be defense. But if it’s offense, it’s offense. If it’s defense, it’s cool.”
Young said he thinks the season he had — he tied a school-record with six rushing TDs in one game and set a school-record with 284 yards rushing in another— helped convince UW coaches to look at him first on offense.
“I think that changed their mind on where they wanted to put me,” he said. “I guess they like the way I run.”
He likes tailback more than the spot where he’s playing this week, however, as Young is being used as a fullback for the West team in the Offense-Defense Bowl.
“I don’t really like it at all,” said Young, listed at 6-1, 220. “But at least I get to hit people. Same thing I’d be doing at linebacker. So it works out fine.”
TV INFO FOR O-D BOWL AND UNDER ARMOUR GAME— By the way, the Offense-Defense All-American Bowl will be televised live on Fox College Sports — yes, the same network that did the UW-Stanford game this year — Saturday at 2 p.m. Pacific time. I also see replays on Comcast in Seattle for Saturday night at 10 p.m. on FCS and Sunday at 6 a.m. on ESPNU and Sunday night at 7 p.m. on ESPNU.
Three other UW commits are also in the game — the Lakes High duo of Jamaal Kearse and Darius Waters, and OL Erik Kohler of Oaks Christian. I was able to also speak with each of those three in phone interviews today and will pass that along later.
Nick Montana is playing in a different all-star game this weekend, the Under Armour All-American Game, which will be held Saturday in St. Petersburg, Fla. You can see that game Saturday at 8 a.m. on ESPN.
You can find lots of info on that game here.
Montana is mentioned in an entry at 11:10 a.m. that states: “Nick Montana has been the most accurate of the Black team quarterbacks to this point and has thrown a few really nice seam routes, while he father — NFL Hall of Famer Joe Montana — looks on.”

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