Two of the most highly rated wide receivers to ever commit to play for Chris Petersen will take their official visits to UW this weekend.
They started watching Washington football games together last year during the Huskies’ march to the College Football Playoff. As they watched from afar, Marquis Spiker and Austin Osborne pictured themselves doing some of the same things they were seeing from the Huskies’ two star wide receivers, Dante Pettis and John Ross III.
“We would say, ‘That’s going to be us some day,’” Spiker recalled this week.
Today, Spiker and Osborne are scheduled to fly together from Southern California to Seattle. They are two of about 10 recruits set to make their official visit to UW this weekend — and two of the most highly rated wide receivers to ever commit to play for Chris Petersen.
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As things stand, Spiker is on track to be the highest-ranked prospect that Petersen has recruited in Petersen’s 12 years as a head coach. In the latest recruiting rankings from Rivals.com, Spiker is listed as the No. 29 overall recruit in the Class of 2018, and the No. 5 receiver. He’s ranked No. 51 overall by 247sports.com.
He plans to sign a National Letter of Intent with UW next Wednesday during the start of the new early signing period.
The Huskies, he said, were an “easy choice” for him when he made a verbal commitment in March.
“One of the biggest reasons was definitely Coach Petersen,” said Spiker, whose first name is pronounced Marcus. “He’s literally like my grandpa. They’re like the same person. So I was really comfortable with him. And I appreciated that all the coaches there wanted to talk to me, not just the receiver coach. It’s family-oriented there, and they never felt like strangers when I was talking to them.”
Listed at about 6-feet-3 and 188 pounds, Spiker last month broke the California prep record for receiving touchdowns, finishing his career at Murrieta Valley High School with 72 touchdown catches. As a senior this fall, he had 83 catches for 1,490 yards and 27 touchdowns.
He broke the record during a dramatic 59-56 playoff victory over Santa Margarita on Nov. 10, a game in which he had 13 receptions for 284 yards and four touchdowns.
“If you saw when I scored, we celebrated (the record) for like 15, 20 seconds in the end zone,” Spiker said. “And it wasn’t showing off, because I’m not like that, but everyone wanted to come and give me hugs and congratulations and stuff like that. We have a real close team, and that was really cool. … I was glad I got (the record), but it wasn’t our main goal for this season.”
A week later, Spiker broke his collarbone in the first half of a season-ending playoff loss. He had a doctor’s checkup on Thursday and was told he is on schedule for a full recovery in two months. His plan is to enroll at UW next summer.
For the second straight year, the Huskies made the wide-receiver position a priority in recruiting, and this 2018 class is as highly regarded as any UW has had in recent memory at the position. Spiker and Osborne, a 6-3 receiver from Mission Viejo, Calif., are both four-star prospects, as is the versatile Trey Lowe out of Portland’s Jesuit High School. Osborne is ranked as the nation’s No. 115 overall recruit by Rivals, and 247sports ranks Lowe as the No. 284 overall prospect.
“These are some elite-level receivers, and that’s awesome for me,” said Bothell High School quarterback Jacob Sirmon, one of the headliners of UW’s recruiting class. “There’s a lot of chemistry involved, and a lot of trust, and I already feel a bond with those guys. We have our official visit this weekend, so we’ll all be hanging out. Before we’ve even enrolled, these are some of my best friends already.”
Osborne and Spiker first met at a summer camp a couple years ago. They became fast friends, later playing on the same team in a 7-on-7 tournament. Osborne committed to the Huskies last February. Spiker followed suit about five weeks later.
They’ve already been planning future touchdown celebrations when they suit up at Husky Stadium.
“We think about it every single day,” Spiker said.