RECRUITING: Panthers players focus on season


At least five Palo Verde football players could end up with Football Bowl Subdivision programs next year.

But the Panthers don’t like talking about that much. All they care about is winning a Class 4A state championship.

“Going into the season, we all knew we were getting recruited by D-I schools,” Palo Verde linebacker Liloa Nobriga said. “We kind of set aside that personal glory for the team.

“We really want to win a state championship. We block out all that other stuff.”

It has helped the top-ranked Panthers roll to a 7-0 record, including a 4-0 Northwest League mark.

The headliner in the group is cornerback Torin Harris, who orally has committed to Southern California.

Nobriga will catch a red-eye flight after Palo Verde’s game at Arbor View on Friday for an official visit to Hawaii this weekend. He also could visit Fresno State, Utah, Oregon State, Arizona and UNLV.

“I haven’t narrowed it down yet,” he said. “I’ll decide after the season. Right now I’m just focusing on winning a state championship.”

Running back Chaz Thomas is yet to schedule any visits but has drawn interest from Washington, Oregon State, San Diego State, UNR and Utah.

“Everybody’s just thinking about high school,” Thomas said. “We all have our (recruiting) stuff, but we’re focusing more on high school and winning a state championship.”

Palo Verde coach Darwin Rost said running back Sidney Hodge is being looked at by Washington State and has offers from Southern Utah and Weber State.

Tight end Alex Bonczyk has drawn interest from Oregon State, Harvard, Yale and San Diego, Rost said.

“Sometimes when a kid makes their mark as a junior, they get senioritis,” Rost said. “They’re not thinking about their college careers.

"They’re thinking about winning a state championship. That’s what’s impressive.”

IVY LEAGUE LIKES SHARP — Sierra Vista running back Akil Sharp is drawing interest from Duke, Stanford, Princeton, Harvard and Dartmouth, Mountain Lions coach Mark Sauve said.

“In the Ivy League, he’d be a good, solid running back,” Sauve said. “Other schools that stopped by in the spring were interested in him playing defensive back. He’s got the speed for both.”

OFFERS AT GORMAN — Several Bishop Gorman players have begun fielding offers, Gaels coach Bob Altshuler said.

Seniors whom Altshuler said have offers include receiver/safety Charles Childers (UNLV), offensive tackle Sam Womack (UNLV) and defensive back John Therrell (Army).

Juniors with offers include guard Evan Palelei (Colorado) and tight end Xavier Grimble (UNLV), Altshuler said.

Gorman senior defensive end Justin Chaisson has committed to Oklahoma.

VISITS FOR BROYLES — Foothill right tackle/defensive end Jake Broyles will visit Boise State in late November and Fresno State from Jan. 9 to 11, he said. The 6-foot-6-inch, 250-pound Broyles also has drawn interest from Brown and Princeton.