Jordan Richards is still working through his schools but since the Folsom, Calif., athlete takes academics so seriously and already has a major in mind some programs could get eliminated as he narrows down his choices.
"The main criteria will be my major, I want to go the whole human biology route, sports performance and athletic training, that's what I'm most interested in," Richards said.
"Not a whole lot of schools have that so it's kind of easier to start slashing. All the Pac-10 schools are great and have great programs and great coaches so it will definitely be tough. I'm definitely a West Coast guy. Northwestern and Iowa State are a little different situation because I have family near Northwestern and Iowa State is close by."
Richards, who's taking calculus and physics during his senior year, has already applied to Stanford and there is definite interest in the Cardinal. But it's too early to say whether coach Jim Harbaugh's team has an advantage because Richards, a 5-foot-11, 185-pound recruit, said he's still keeping his other options open.
"I've applied and it's kind of like early application and they came to me and asked if I wanted to do that," Richards said of Stanford. "I did that whole deal. I should know by the end of August or so but still a bunch of other schools are a complete possibility with Cal, Arizona, Washington, Oregon and Northwestern still involved.
"I don't really have an exact timetable. We start so early this year and it will be kind of interesting to see what happens with the whole Stanford thing and the other schools and whether I do visits."
Rivals.com rates Richards, a three-star prospect, as the No. 77 athlete nationally and No. 89 in the California state rankings. He said there hasn't been too much thinking about official visits yet but Richards has already seen a few schools including Oregon and Oregon State unofficially.
"I haven't really thought a whole lot about official visits yet so we'll see regarding the visits and kind of when to take those and how it correlates with the season and where I want to go," Richards said.
"I wouldn't say Washington and Oregon are too far away from home. I went up there unofficially my sophomore year to see Oregon and Oregon State. I saw the campuses but none of the football stuff."