Signing Day Journey
Here is a recap of one of the more exciting days of the year. Signing Day!
The alarm went off real early. At least real early for a sports writer.
Had to be at Skyview by 7 a.m. for the first signing ceremony of the day.
Made it with 10 minutes to spare. Even had a celebrity sighting: Former Columbian reporter Nick Daschel was there.
Skyview is so talented, its signing period went in waves.
First wave was soccer: Four players.
Second wave was football: Five players.
The reason for the early ceremony is because Skyview is in the middle of finals week. Quarterback Kieran McDonagh, in fact, was wearing a tie and looking sharp. He acknowledged later it was because he had a debate in one of his finals. He had planned on wearing Portland State colors, but the debate took precedence.
So allow me to throw a flag on Skyview. You call yourselves a football school? Hardly. What football school schedules finals on Signing Day? Shame! Shame! Shame!
Jonah Koreski made a statement about his decision when he was asked to introduce himself to the crowd and to name his college.
“THE Montana Tech,” he said, mimicking professional players who emphasis the THE when talking about their colleges, i.e. THE Ohio State University.
Koreski’s almost pulled off an all-time laugher, but he forgot his hats. He was going to act like he was choosing his colleges by picking up a hat on the table. He was going to bring an LSU cap, an Alabama cap, and a Montana Tech cap. And then, of course, like any great football player, pick the Montana Tech hat.
That would have been classic.
From Skyview to Union for a 9 a.m. ceremony.
The Titans gave away cookies! Always a good thing for a sports reporter.
Brandon Brody-Heim signed with Portland State. A great running back and linebacker in high school, he will play defense in college.
“I like stopping people more than scoring,” Brody-Heim said. “Plus, you can still score on defense. It happens rarely, so there’s more glory.”
Sounds like the Vikings should be prepared for some pick-sixes.
In soccer, Kayla Vera certainly is blazing her own trail. She signed with Southeast Louisiana State. Not too many athletes from Clark County, Wash., go there.
Oh, and did I mention there were cookies?
Next stop would be Camas High School, but with time to stop at Starbucks to get a drink and start writing my two stories.
Another celebrity sighting: Columbian sports copy editor and college notebook writer Kurt Zimmer is in da house!
That’s of note because as soon as these high school athletes become college athletes, Zimmer will start writing about them.
I brought a latte to one of the coaches at Camas to make good on an earlier promise. You see, Camas High School, as beautiful as it is, is in the middle of nowhere. Teachers there can’t just take a two-minute ride for a quick coffee break. Heck, even people who live in Camas think the high school is too far “out there.” So all visitors to Camas High School should bring an extra drink with them every now and then, to help out a coach or a teacher.
Camas’ event showcased eight athletes, including three football players and three soccer players. This ceremony was high-tech, with logos and statistics shown on the video screen behind the athletes.
Well played, Papermakers.
While at Camas, I got to talk to Jonathan Warner and his football scholarship to Penn State. I told him that the term “shock the world” is overused in sports, but if he does become a star at Penn State, that would be “shocking the world.” He is a late-bloomer of a recruit.
So I told him I hope he does, indeed, shock the world and then gets drafted by the NFL. Specifically, by the Raiders.
Curt Warner, Jonathan’s dad who played a little football himself in his younger days, was not amused.
The former Seahawk said if his son wears Silver and Black, he would disown him.
He was joking.
Actually, Curt thought about it for a minute and came up with a solution. Jonathan would not sign with the Raiders. He would just hold out.
He was joking.
Sorry I missed a signing ceremony in La Center. The time overlapped with the Camas ceremony.
Break time. Head home, grab a 30-minute nap. (Remember, this day started early for a sports writer.) Then to Mountain View.
Ryan Johnson was highlighted for his football scholarship to Montana. Dozens of his friends were there. Some of them were asked to say things about Ryan. Then Ryan’s dad spoke.
It was a little dusty in the room.
The Johnsons said this day was not just for Ryan, but for all of his family members, coaches, and friends who have helped Ryan to this point in life.
Then they had cake!
I skipped the cake. No. Really. I did. Don’t laugh. I did. I’m sure it was good, but I think I had too many cookies at Union.
Love this day. My stories should be in Thursday’s edition of The Columbian. Also, Bryan from GSHLfootball.com and I hope to have a podcast up in the next few days to give more thoughts on Signing Day.