San Diego State had its best local football recruiting campaign of the decade last year, signing five San Diego County high school players.
It was expected, however, because Coach Denny Stolz emphasized recruiting local players. Doug Scovil, who coached the Aztecs from 1980 to 1985, preferred out-of-town players.
Last year's number of local recruits is expected to be more than doubled when players begin signing letters of intent Wednesday.
SDSU already has received verbal commitments from 11 local players, including five high school players this month. The latest commitments are from quarterback Scott Barrick (Fallbrook), offensive lineman Ian Dunn (Chula Vista), offensive lineman/linebacker Robert (Jumbo) Malsack (Escondido), linebacker Sai Nui (Oceanside) and tight end Judd Rachow (Hilltop).
"Denny Stolz (SDSU's coach) said he wants to build a program emphasizing local kids and Southern California," said George Ohnsorgen, Chula Vista's coach. "That makes us real happy and the kids real happy. Most kids who go to a four-year school are not ready to go away per se. A lot of them get homesick, come back, go to junior college for a year and stay close to home."
Barrick, who led Fallbrook to the San Diego Section 3-A championship, is considered SDSU's leading local high school recruit. He set a California state single-season record by passing for 3,053 yards in 1986.
The Aztecs plan to redshirt Barrick because senior quarterback Todd Santos returns in the fall. Jack Skoog, a redshirt freshman last season, will be Santos' backup.
According to Fallbrook Coach Tom Pack, Barrick has been told he'll compete with Skoog and Brad Platt for the starting job in 1988. Platt, a community college transfer from Southwestern, also will redshirt this season.
The Aztecs strengthened their chances of attracting local players by winning the Western Athletic Conference in 1986, according to local high school coaches.
SDSU is hoping that Dunn (6-4, 265) and Malsack (6-4, 240) will eventually help to strengthen the offensive line. Four of the Aztecs' five starting offensive linemen at the end of 1986 were underclassmen, meaning Dunn and Malsack are there for the future.