Joe Sanders (La Grange, Ga./Troup County) had just parked. He was on his way to Georgia’s Sanford Stadium. He was getting ready to watch the Bulldogs beat Georgia Tech, 42-10.
Before he got into the game, though, his phone rang. It was Washington assistant coach Tosh Lupoi. He surprised the Tennessee commit with a scholarship offer.
“It feels good,” Sanders said. “It’s another decision, another choice. I’ve got to go check them out. I’m going to take an official visit out there.”
The invitation to join the Huskies came as a surprise to the 6-foot-5, 270-pound defensive end.
“Not really,” Sanders said when asked if he expected the call. “I haven’t really looked at the school yet.”
He said former teammate and Auburn commit Reuben Foster (Auburn, Ala./Auburn) -- rated the nation’s top inside linebacker -- told Lupoi to take a closer look at the three-star recruit. After Washington evaluated his film, the program’s ace recruiter shared some good news with Sanders.
“He said they wanted me, gave me the offer,” Sanders said.
The senior has yet to schedule an official visit to Washington but said he will definitely take one. Foster, who played with Sanders last season and unofficially visited the Huskies this summer, has also talked about taking an official visit to Washington.
Sanders originally committed to the Volunteers earlier this month. That was before coach Derek Dooley was fired.
“I’m committed to Tennessee, but I’ve still got my choices open,” Sanders said. “I don’t know who the coach is going to be yet, but I’m still committed.”
Since Dooley lost his job, coaches have been calling. Now the senior has something to think about as he weighs his options.
“I have to call them some time this week to see what’s going on and how everything will work out with the new head coach,” Sanders said.