Palo Alto '11 DE Anderson has Stanford No. 1

DE Kevin Anderson

Although both his parents hold degrees from Cal, Palo Alto (Calif.) High School defensive end Kevin Anderson favors a school on the other side of the bay.

"I think Stanford's definitely my No. 1 right now," Kevin Anderson said. "The two groups (of schools that have shown interest in me) are the big Pac-10 schools and the smaller Ivies, which obviously have the academics. I think Stanford is kind of like the best of both worlds."

Anderson, who holds a verbal offer from Yale in addition to an offer from Stanford, made the short trip across El Camino last weekend to attend the Cardinal's junior day.

"I had a really good time," he said.

Although Anderson has obviously had plenty of opportunities to go to Stanford sporting events and get acquainted with the athletic facilities, the junior day trip provided him an opportunity to see a different side of the Stanford campus.

"I really haven't ever gone to the heart of campus like dorm wise and the student places so it was nice to check that out," Anderson said.

Over the course of the weekend, Anderson went on a comprehensive campus tour, spent time with the coaching staff, and sat in on a Q and A session with Condoleeza Rice.

"The first day was like a generic tour of the campus so we went and saw Hoover Tower and Memorial Church," Anderson said. "At the end we had a Q and A with Condoleezza Rice, which was pretty awesome.

"Then Saturday Coach Harbaugh gave a speech then we broke off with different position coaches. Then we went and toured the facilities like the weight room and stadium. We had lunch up in the skybox and then we went to the gift shop then the basketball game."

Anderson met with defensive line coach Randy Hart during the position group meetings, but he's actually somewhat unclear as to what position the Cardinal are recruiting him for.

"I was talking to the defensive line coach who wants me to bulk up and gain 10 or 15 pounds and play as a defensive end," Anderson said. "But earlier I talked to another coach and he wants me to not gain as much weight and be a pass rush or outside linebacker so I'm really not sure right now."

Palo Alto High School runs a 4-3 defense, but Anderson seems open to the concept of playing in a 3-4.

"My high school runs a 4-3 so I'm used to that but I think size wise it might help to be in a 3-4, maybe the outside linebacker position or something like that," he said.

In addition to Stanford and Yale, Anderson holds interest from Cal, Oregon, UCLA, Harvard, and Princeton.

He has no timeline to make a decision, but plans to take visit a number of schools in upcoming months to get a better sense of what he will look for in a school.

"Over spring break I'm probably going to check out some of the schools on the East Coast then probably have some more weekend trips and junior days within the Pac-10," Anderson said. "It's pretty easy to go Cal or on a weekend trip to Oregon."

When it does come time for Anderson to make a college decision, academics will likely be his top priority.

"I think academics is definitely pretty high," Anderson said. "But also, for example, Stanford's a rising school football wise and I definitely don't want to be on a really bad team. I want to win games so that's pretty high up there and also the campus life and how much fun the students are having. I want to play football and do well in school but also have a good time when I'm there."

Either way, Anderson doesn't think his family's strong Cal heritage will impact his decision.

"I've lived in Palo Alto my whole life but my whole family is big Cal fans so I've always been kind of a Cal fan living in Palo Alto," Anderson said. "But they're fine with it and they definitely like Stanford now and are going to support me in whatever I choose. so they're not really impacting the decision that way."


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