Lewis Still Committed To UW

Drew Lewis (FoxSportsNEXT.com)

Drew Lewis found out about Steve Sarkisian's departure to USC via Twitter. For the 6-foot-2, 200-pound athlete from Eastlake High School on the Plateau, it came as a bit of a shock. What did it mean for his verbal commitment to the University of Washington? Who would they hire? Would they run the same defense?

"The first time I heard about it was on social media," Lewis told Dawgman.com Thursday. "I found out he didn't tell all the coaches, so it kind of caught all of us off guard. I respect that he did what's best for him. I'm personally just taking it day-by-day on how things turn out and what kind of role I'll have."

Just like everyone else involved with Washington Football, that four-day limbo period was an uncomfortable one with too many questions and no answers. But then the Huskies hired Boise State Head Coach Chris Petersen, and the outlook changed dramatically.

"I've known about him before," Lewis said when asked for his initial reaction to the Petersen hire on December 6. "I know he's done great things at Boise State. Even my Dad knows a lot about him so he let me know what to expect when I do talk to him and what questions to ask. I've been able to do a little bit of research and I know he'll do great things at U-Dub. I wasn't really worried about the situation.

"As of right now I'm still working on getting a hold of coach Petersen to talk to him personally about the situation. I have already spoken with coach (Bob) Gregory, who I believe will be the linebackers coach at U-Dub following his bowl game. So I have talked to a couple of coaches but I really want to have a conversation with coach Petersen to see where I stand with U-Dub and if he's still interested in recruiting me - which I'm sure he would be because they were doing a little bit of recruiting when they were back at Boise State."

Lewis and Gregory spoke on Wednesday night. What did they talk about? "He asked me where I stood," Lewis said. "I told him that I definitely wanted to keep my verbal commitment to Washington strong, regardless of the coaching change. The only thing that came with that was that I wanted to keep my options open in case something crazy were to happen again before February."

Lewis was recruited by the old UW defensive staff as a linebacker. Is the new defensive staff thinking the same way? "It sounds like it," Lewis confirmed. "It came down to a matter of whether or not they still want me in their scheme and if it would work out. I'm glad to find out that they are still interested in recruiting me and they still think I'm a great player. I feel comfortable in the position I'm in right now."

Gregory told Lewis he couldn't talk about official visits because of his current obligation to Boise State. But there is a tentative plan to officially visit Washington on January 17th.

"That is the plan," said Lewis. "We haven't negotiated that to be the permanent date. It's looking like that weekend or the next one will be one. U-Dub is one of the schools I do want to take an official to."

Lewis doesn't have any other official visits planned yet, but that will change. "The schools I'll most likely be visiting outside of U-Dub are Arizona State, possibly Oregon State if I can talk to their coaches about that," he said. "And another school would be USC because of the new coaches going there. They are kind of in the same boat as U-Dub because they haven't scheduled it yet, but that's probably where I'll be going."

At this point it sounds like Washington, Arizona State, and USC will get official visits from Lewis. Here's what he thinks about each of his favorites:

UW - "Because of my commitment and that's the school I always wanted to go to."

ASU - "It's just barely behind U-Dub. I've been able to visit it and I like it a lot."

USC - "The coaches that have come from U-Dub to USC have stayed in contact with me. They plan on bringing in the same type of scheme so it would be ideal to have the same type of people there, so that's why they are still interested in me."

The thought right now is that Lewis will take the visits and then sign on signing day - but he made it clear that the other two schools will have to beat out U-Dub at this point. They are his clear leader.

Drew's father, former Seahawks executive Will Lewis, comes at the recruiting process with a wealth of knowledge and experience. What's been Will's greatest piece of advice to his son as he plows through the final six weeks of the process?

"One thing he doesn't want me to do is panic and make a decision without thinking about it," said Lewis. "He wants me to take my time and throughout this period contact coaches and find out where I stand with them and where they stand with me and get an understanding of things before I make any serious decisions."

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