Offensive tackle Zach Banner of Lakewood, WA's Lakes High school, is one of the most talented prospects in the country, and he is closing in on a decision between Washington, Oklahoma and USC, he told the Seattle Times:
"It just feels good to know that I can play both there and understand that they have good offensive line coaches and good teams," he said. "I see all three of those schools competing for a national title in the next four years and that's my main focus. It's not personal stuff, like going to the NFL. It's more about the team and the national championship."
When asked about the pull of staying close to home compared to the allure of leaving, Banner said he is focused on finding the best fit.
"A lot of people say, if I don't end up going to UW, it's like I'll lose everything, I'll have to start over," Banner said. "That's not the case. I've made a name for myself as a person and a player, so if I was to go to USC or Oklahoma, I'd come back here in 20 years and set up a family here in Washington and I feel like I'd be treated the same as if I'd gone to UW. I've built that over my last four years in high school and I feel good about it."
But in a conflicting report, Banner indicated to Justin Hopkins of 247 Sports that he had not just a top three, but a top five:
"All of the five remaining schools offer great basketball," he said. "Washington has been recruiting me since I was a freshman for basketball, so I know they are sincerely interested."
The two additional schools? Michigan and Notre Dame.
Both reports are in lock-step, however, on the timing of Banner's decision -- shortly after his January 13th visit to USC.