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KEVIN SULLIVAN, ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER
Tesoro running back Nate Tago remains undecided on where he will play college football. National Letter of Intent Day is Wednesday.

'Crazy' experience almost over for Tesoro's Tago

OCVARSITY.COM

Tesoro running back Nate Tago described his recruiting process this week as "getting a little crazy."

With National Signing Day on Wednesday, the Register's All-County senior has eight FCS suitors but remains undecided despite the best efforts of college recruiters.

"Coaches (are) calling constantly," Tago said in a text message, "setting up home visits every day. Coaches (are) calling my dad. (I'm) going on trips.

"And the hardest part of it is telling the coach that I'm not ready to commit yet."

The 5-foot-10, 210-pound Tago has made official recruiting trips to Stony Brook, Montana State and Portland State and an unofficial visit to Sacramento State.

He also is considering Eastern Washington, Northern Colorado and Northern Arizona.

Tago said he will "probably" make a decision before National Signing Day but is purposely not hitting the recruiting trail this weekend for a visit.

"I'm taking the weekend off to think about my decision," he said.

Indiana State also is vying for Tago. The Missouri Valley Conference school said if Tago doesn't sign Wednesday, it would welcome him for a recruiting trip.

Tago rushed for 1,784 yards on 248 carries last season.

GOOD GRADES FOR O.C.

Orange County has assembled a "solid" 2013 recruiting class, said Greg Biggins, a national recruiting analyst for Fox Sports and Scout.com.

"You've got Dane Crane (Santa Margarita; Washington commit) who is our No. 1 center in the whole west region," Biggins said. "Connor O'Brien (Santa Margarita; Washington commit) is a top-five outside linebacker. Max Redfield (Mission Viejo; Notre Dame commit) is the No. 2 safety in the West.

"Johnny Stanton (Santa Margarita; Nebraska commit), before he got hurt, was probably a top-five quarterback. Thomas Duarte (Mater Dei; UCLA commit) is the No. 2 tight end in the West."

Biggins added that it was a "good year" for linemen.

"Sean Harlow (San Clemente; Oregon State commit) really elevated his stock a lot. I like J.D. (Hinnant of Fountain Valley; Cal commit). Unfortunately, he had that (car) accident. He was a guy who was probably going to Oregon. ... Alex Redmond (Los Alamitos; UCLA commit) is probably one of the top two or three guards in the whole west region. (He's) a monster."

Biggins said Santa Margarita wide receiver River Cracraft (Washington State commit) and Mission Viejo defensive end Garrett Marino (Arizona State commit) are two lesser-known county players who could surprise some fans in college.

"Ed Tandy (Tustin; Cal commit) is another guy," Biggins said. "He's very, very good. You watch his film and he kind of jumps off the screen. I know UCLA was close to offering him earlier on in the season before they started to get a lot of commitments."

MARTINEZ LEADS LIST

Laguna Beach all-purpose standout Drake Martinez highlighted this week's college announcements.

The All-County senior committed to Nebraska, where his brother, Taylor, is the starting quarterback.

"I just felt more comfortable there," Drake said in a text message of his decision.

The Cornhuskers recruited Drake to play safety, which is fine with him.

"I believe I'm better on defense," he said, "and I like it more (than offense)."

Mission Viejo wide receiver Frank Schnicker (6-0, 180) emerged as a sleeper. The senior committed to Nevada despite being the Diablos' third receiver and playing junior varsity in 2011 because of his transfer from Millikan of Long Beach.

Servite linebacker Joel Foy (6-2, 215) committed to Air Force.

ETEAKI TO GREY SHIRT

Servite running back Salesi "Charlie" Eteaki (6-0, 202) will grey shirt at Utah and enroll at the Pac-12 school in 2014, Friars football coach Troy Thomas said.

Former Servite lineman Miles Williams recently made a successful grey shirt. The 2012 graduate delayed his enrollment to Cal Poly SLO and reported to the FCS contender stronger, Thomas said.

"I think it will end up being a good thing (for Eteaki)," Thomas said of the grey shirt.

Servite junior running back Andrew Moore (6-0, 221) could be one of the county's top recruits in the class of 2014. Michigan was among the schools to scout Moore this week.

ROARD WARRIORS

A few county seniors are taking recruiting trips this weekend:

• Mission Viejo tight end Braxton Shirley (6-3, 250) is at Indiana State. The Sycamores have offered Shirley a scholarship.

• Register All-County linebacker J.C. Genova (6-0, 200) of Mater Dei is at Portland State, which has offered the senior.

• Segerstrom linebacker prospect Kiona Drayton (6-0, 235) is making an official visit to SMU.

• Capistrano Valley defensive back Jeff Shott (6-0, 195) will make an official recruiting trip to Division II Humboldt State the weekend of Feb. 16.

CAMPS TO REMEMBER

Prime Time Polynesian will host camps for linemen, linebackers, fullbacks and tight ends at Buena Park each Saturday from 2-4 p.m. The camps, which start this Saturday and run until June, are $25 per session and for players ages 12-17. ...

Former UCLA coach Terry Donahue and the National Football Foundation will present the California Showcase for Division II, Division III and NAIA senior recruits at Home Depot Center at Feb. 23 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The showcase is free but there are academic requirements. For more information, go to www.cashowcase.org. ...

A Nike Football Training Camp will be held March 10 in the Los Angeles area from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., according to Student Sports.

Contact the writer: dalbano@ocregister.com


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