Oregon State coaches have continued to make it known to everyone that they want to repair, rebuild, and strengthen relationships with prospects and high schools in the state of Oregon. Jonathan Smith and his staff have made a concerted effort to not only do that since the staff was put together, but also making sure that alumni of the Beaver football program are more than welcomed back.
During the April 28th weekend of the spring game, Oregon State hosted close 100 recruits on campus and over 100 alumni. One of those recruits, who currently has an offer from the Beavers, was 6-foot-1, 215-pound 247Sports three-star linebacker Jason “Junior” Walling from McNary high school whose father also played tight end and defensive end for the Beavers in the early 90’s.
“I had a great time at the spring game. All of the coaches and recruiting staff made me feel like I was family. I was able to speak with Coach Tibesar, Coach Bray, Coach Cookus and then after the spring game my dad and I had an opportunity to visit with Coach Smith in his office. I really enjoyed seeing how far the team has come since my last visit before the spring game. You can really feel the energy and passion that the team is playing with right now. I think Coach Smith has the right group of coaches around him, and I’m excited for the future of Beaver Football.”
Each conversation that Walling Jr. has had with coaches on the staff have been meaningful and has only opened his eyes even more about what the new coaching staff’s values are and the goals they have for the future of Beaver football.
“My conversation with Coach Cookus has primarily been about OSU’s interest in me and if I was enjoying the experience. My conversations with Coach Bray have been around them seeing me as playing inside linebacker and what they do with their players and expect out of that position. My conversations with Coach Tibesar has been around his philosophy, most specifically getting players to buy into being contributors and not so focused on being starters or superstars, and that depth is the key to winning games. When my dad and I sat down with Coach Smith, it was really just an opportunity to build a relationship, there isn’t much he can tell me about OSU that I don’t know. It was great to get to know him on a one to one basis and to really understand where he comes from and what his values and beliefs are around running this program.”
When asked about his connections with Corvallis and the school and football program, Walling Jr. was clear with the feeling every time he steps on campus and the memories that come with each visit.
“I absolutely have a special tie to Oregon State, and at this time would consider them my top choice. I hope to have another opportunity to visit Oregon State this fall for a game or two to experience the game day atmosphere, this time as a recruit. I will also be attending the camp the Beavers coaching staff are hosting this summer on June 3rd. I have also been invited to attend a number of other camps including USC’s and Notre Dame’s.”
Walling Jr. has seen his stock as a prospect continue to rise by the month and is planning to make quite a few stops this spring and summer at different schools and camps to continue to get his name out there on the recruiting trail and showcasing his skills in front of coaches and scouts.
“I will pretty busy over the next few months making multiple stops to different camps and college campuses. I will be at The Opening regionals in Las Vegas (May 12th), and the May Madness Invitational in Seattle (May 27th), NW Showcase at Pacific University (June 2nd), the OSU camp that they are hosting (June 3rd), USC camp to attend the Rising Stars (June 10th) and their Elite Camp (June 12th) although I am unsure if I will be able to make the USC camps since that is during finals week for me, and Notre Dame’s invitation to their Elite Skills Camp (June 22nd) and possibly the Washington State camp (July 28th).
The McNary star linebacker has been making sure he can get out to visit plenty of colleges on unofficial visits to continue to build relationships with different college coaches to check out what football life is like outside of Oregon.
“Most of my communication with other schools has been centered around my unofficial visits that I have taken. Since March, I have taken unofficial visits to Cal, Eastern Washington, Oregon State, San Jose State, UNLV, Utah, Utah State and Washington State. I have also been hearing from Washington a little bit as well. Even though I have been a Beaver fan my whole life, I don’t want to rush the process, I want to take my time and visit a few more schools before I make a decision, but at this time OSU is my top school for sure.”
Last season with McNary, Walling Jr. registered 177 tackles, with 29 tackles for loss and 14 sacks and helped his team post a 7-4 record as a sophomore. With a majority of that team’s starters on both sides of the ball returning next season, Walling will look to help his Celtics team compete for a Greater Valley Conference title along with the ultimate goal of contesting for a 6A state title.
I look forward to being able to watch Walling in person multiple times this spring and summer at multiple camps. I also having my eyes set on a few McNary games I will need to catch in person to see Walling along with his teammate in 247Sports three-star quarterback Erik Barker this fall to see these dynamic athletes put on a show against other high level competition in the state of Oregon such as: vs West Linn (Sept. 7th, vs Tualatin (Sept. 14th), and vs West Salem (Oct. 19th).
McNary has finalized its 2018 football schedule. @OSAASports— Derek Wiley (@derekwwiley) May 5, 2018
8/31 North Medford
9/7 at West Linn
9/14 at Tualatin
9/21 at Tumwater, Wash.
9/28 South Medford
10/12 at Bend
10/19 at West Salem
10/26 South Salem
Building The Dam will continue to check in with Walling Jr. as his recruitment is sure to start to build momentum during the coming months with multiple schools interested in offering him heading into his junior season with McNary.
Walling Jr.’s Hudl highlights:
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