Prior to Sunday's Los Angeles NIKE Camp, Marcus Martin said he could be closing in on some offers and the first one came for him Thursday when Washington said it was going to be the first school on his list to offer him a scholarship.
"It's real big," said Martin, a 6-foot-3, 357-pound offensive tackle from Los Angeles Crenshaw. "I'm happy because that's my first offer. I've been in contact with Washington so I'm really excited that they offered me."
The Huskies are under serious consideration for many reasons but mainly because coach Steve Sarkisian has southern California ties, many top local recruits are headed up to Washington and Martin likes the overall feel of the program. More teams could join the mix but the Huskies will certainly stay in contention.
"They told me they were going to offer me before the NIKE camp," Martin said of Washington's staff. "They just had to do a little evaluation and they just had to talk it out with coach Sark and my position coach. They wanted me to get to know the whole staff so I had a phone conference with the staff. The NIKE camp just pushed me over. It made me look even better as a player.
"They're an up-and-coming program and they're recruiting a lot of kids from around here. They're picking up a lot of talent and their program is up-and-coming and they beat one of the top Pac-10 schools last year and they seem to keep on developing and it looks like they're heading toward maybe a Pac-10 championship next year."
Washington already has nine commitments in its 2011 class, the most recent coming Thursday from Los Angeles Dorsey linebacker Matthew Lyons. Recruiting top California talent is nothing new to Sarkisian and his staff since six of the Huskies' nine committed players are from that state.
"Sark is a cool dude," Martin said. "He's cool, he's humble. When he talks to you he doesn't talk to you like a coach. He talks to you like an average person so I don't feel like I have to put on any kind of front with coach Sark. Knowing he's from around here makes him even better."
Martin, one of the top offensive linemen at the Los Angeles NIKE Camp, could be closing in on more offers as well. He said Sunday that Arizona, Southern Cal, UCLA, Florida, Oregon, Cal, Nebraska and Michigan are the main programs showing the most interest.