football

Balducci is big-time prospect

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Alex Balducci had some nagging injuries during his junior season which also forced him out of the U.S. Army National Combine but the Portland (Ore.) Central Catholic defensive end has not seen a slowdown in his recruitment.
Oregon and Washington are two of Balducci's favorites, Oregon State has also offered and Central Catholic coach Steve Pyne said Boise State and Utah could be close to offering the 6-foot-4, 268-pound prospect.
"I don't know if he's set on any one place yet," Pyne said. "Washington and Oregon have been in the lead since they both offered him last summer.
"I think he's open to anything. He was excited because he's going to call (Boise State) coach (Chris) Petersen and hopes that leads to an offer. We'll see."
Balducci, a member of the Rivals 250 to watch for 2012 list, was impressive last spring at the Eugene NIKE Camp and is physically advanced for his age. Pyne said that development is getting even better because Balducci is spending lots of time in the weight room.
"He's 6-4 and he weighed in at 268 the other day," Pyne said. "He's really just a huge athlete playing d-line and o-line and he has a great motor.
"He's really starting to hit it hard in the weight room and he's seeing some results really fast. You can see his body taking a different shape in the last few months. He has a bunch of upside for sure."
Balducci is developing so fast that there is strong consideration to play him at nose tackle and offensive guard in his senior season while he also sees time at defensive end.
The Central Catholic star has said in recent interviews that there's a good possibility he'd move to defensive tackle in college.
"He'll play both for us," Pyne said. "He runs so well at that size and we have enough depth on our defensive front that he'll play the nose and d-end and he'll play a little more guard on the o-line because in our scheme we want the big body movers on the inside."
UCLA, USC and Colorado are also showing interest in Balducci, who also has Alabama, Miami, Texas A&M and Michigan on his growing list. Balducci plays at the same school that produced four-star defensive end Brennan Scarlett, a Cal signee, in the 2011 recruiting class.
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