Three down, one to go.
Ayden Hector became the latest coveted recruit from a loaded Eastside Catholic football team to find his collegiate home. The four-star recruit gave his verbal commitment to Stanford in a two-and-a-half minute video Monday evening.
Hector, a 6-foot, 198-pound defensive back, had narrowed his top five to Washington, Oregon, USC, Stanford and Alabama. With four defensive backs committed in Hector’s class already, Washington was thought to have cooled its pursuit of the local cornerback.
In choosing Stanford, Hector follows in the footsteps of his older brother, who is currently a student there. Playing college football in California, he follows in the footsteps of his father, who played at USC, and his uncle, who played at California.
“Hector is strong in man coverage with a smooth change of direction,” national recruiting editor Brandon Huffman writes for 247Sports. “He’s physical in run support, a plus tackle with good instincts but also the ability to transition in his backpedal with ease. … Projects as a multiyear Power 5 starter and projects as third-day NFL draft selection.”
He’ll enter the Division I ranks with teammates Gee Scott Jr., who committed to Ohio State, and Sam Adams II, bound for the banks of Montlake. Now we await the decision of four-star tight end D.J. Rogers, who boasts offers from across the nation but not from Washington. A pair of three-star linemen from Eastside, Jernias Tafia and D’angalo Titialii, have also yet to announce their decisions.
That group, with an equally impressive set of underclassmen, has the Crusaders off to a 4-0 start this season with a signature win over nationally ranked Pinnacle (Phoenix, Ariz.) in Week 3.
Hector is ranked 195th in 247Sports’ top 247, the third-ranked player from Eastside Catholic behind Scott (25th) and Adams (115th). Rogers checks in at No. 225. Hector is the fifth-ranked player in the state of Washington, per 247Sports’ composite rating, and the No. 20 cornerback nationally in the Class of 2020.
Hector hasn’t been challenged much his senior season, but he still leads the Crusaders with two interceptions, including a pick-six in their season opener against Grant (Calif.).