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Football recruiting: Federal Way trio ready to sign with colleges
The business of college football recruiting is an ever-changing endeavor. And three seniors at Federal Way High School are finding that out during this recruiting season.
Jordan Pulu, Uso Olive and D.J. May led the Eagles to an unbeaten regular season and into the first round of the Class 4A state playoffs for just the second time in 35 years.
The threesome are also slated to ink their national letters of intent on Wednesday, the first official day football players can sign their scholarship offers. Olive and May have both verbally committed to attend the University of Wyoming and Pulu will attend Eastern Washington.
The destinations for Olive and Pulu have both changed from prior verbal commitments within the last week, as was May’s decision to play at Wyoming.
After giving former Washington State University head coach Paul Wulff a verbal commitment during the summer, Pulu, a 6-foot-2, 235-pound inside linebacker, had to go through the recruiting process again after Wulff was fired after the Pac-12 season.
“They backed out when they changed coaching staffs,” said Federal Way head coach John Meagher.
Pulu was a first-team, preseason all-state selection and was named the South Puget Sound League South Division’s Linebacker of the Year by the coaches.
Pulu led Federal Way in tackles with 61 in nine SPSL games for an average of 6.8 a game. He had 50 solo tackles and a high game of 10.5. Pulu broke his ankle during the Eagles’ playoff opening win over Snohomish and was held off the field during their state loss to Eastlake.
Pulu had an inside track at Eastern, however. His older brother, Andru, is a defensive lineman for the Eagles after transferring to Cheney after playing his freshman season at the University of Washington.
After winning the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision national championship in 2010, the Eagles finished 6-5 last season.
Olive, a 6-foot, 300-pound defensive tackle, was originally headed to Portland State, who play in the Division II Big Sky Conference, before switching to Division I Wyoming of the Mountain West. Olive visited the Laramie campus last weekend, along with May.
Wyoming finished 8-5 overall and a third-place finish in the Mountain West with a 5-2 record behind national powers Boise State and Texas Christian.
Olive was a first-team, All-SPSL South selection as both an offensive and defensive lineman. He also might be the strongest player in the state of Washington. Olive can bench press 455 pounds.
Olive finished third in the SPSL South in tackles for loss with 12 during the regular season. Olive’s presence in the middle of the Eagle defense helped Federal Way give up just 11.7 points a game, which was far-and-away the best in the SPSL.
May had another impressive season for the Eagles running the ball. On the season, the 5-foot-9, 185-pounder, tallied 1,288 yards on just 123 carries, including 21 for touchdowns despite missing two games because of a rib injury. He was a first-team, All-SPSL South selection for the second year in a row.
As a junior, May finished the season with 1,310 yards with 11 touchdowns on the ground and two more receiving.
“Wyoming came into the mix for D.J. in late December,” Meagher said. “Then, Chris Tormey went there as the defensive coordinator from (Washington State). He knew about Uso from WSU and they started recruiting him as well. They both had a great visit and committed.”
TJ’s Williams still waiting
Thomas Jefferson senior quarterback K.W. Williams had one of the most electric seasons of anybody in the state. The 6-foot-2, 200-pounder led the Raiders into the postseason for the first time in the school’s history after leading the SPSL in rushing yards with 1,282 in nine games.
Williams was the first-team, All-SPSL North quarterback and the division’s offensive back of the year. He also became the third quarterback in SPSL history to rush for 1,000 yards and throw for 1,000 yards during the season. He finished with 1,111 yards with 11 touchdowns. In total, he accounted for 26 touchdowns in nine games.
But the impressive season has led to only one offer to play college football — Idaho State.
“It is a little bit surprising,” said Joe Williams, K.W.’s father. “He was getting some looks from the local schools, but nothing definite. Then their interest faded. Idaho State’s offer actually looks pretty good. Going there doesn’t look bad.”
Idaho State plays in the Big Sky Conference and finished last season just 2-9 overall. The Bengals are also looking at Williams as a defensive back.
Williams is set to take a recruiting visit to the Pocatello, Ida. campus this weekend and if things go well, he could sign with Idaho State on Feb. 1, according to Joe Williams.