Days after its huge victory over the Colorado Buffaloes, Fresno State picked up another piece of good news on Wednesday, when defensive tackle Jaylen Ruiz (Fresno, Calif./San Joaquin Memorial) committed to the Bulldogs.
Ruiz said he has known for more than a year that he would ultimately end up at Fresno State, but it took head coach Tim DeRuyter to offer him a scholarship before it could be official. During a phone call on Wednesday, it happened.
"If they offered, I knew I would commit," Ruiz said. "He called and said he wanted to let me know that Fresno State is offering, and he asked if I wanted to commit. I told him yeah."
Ruiz said it might take some time for this new reality to sink in, that he'll be suiting up for his hometown Bulldogs next season. But he couldn't mask his excitement over what unfolded.
"I had a whole bunch of thoughts going through my head," Ruiz said. "I just kept thinking, I'm committing to a college right now."
Ruiz had been offered by Southern Methodist, and Pac-12 programs were showing interest, but he said committing to Fresno State was an easy decision.
"It's a big relief and now I don't have to worry about recruiting," Ruiz said. "When people ask me where I'm going to school, I don't have to tell them I don't know anymore. It's a good feeling knowing where I'm going."
Ruiz said he made up his mind when he saw the improvements made by the new coaching staff, particularly in their defensive scheme. The Fresno State coaches see Ruiz coming in as a defensive end in their four-man front, which the 6-foot-3, 274-pound Ruiz said fits him perfectly. Ruiz added that he is finished with the recruiting process and likely won't take any official visits.
"I just want to do well in school and head over to Fresno State when it's time," Ruiz said.