El Cerrito High football star Marcellus Pippins signed a letter of intent with Washington State late Wednesday afternoon.

"When I took my trip, I really felt that it was the right place to be," said the 5-foot-10, 175-pound Pippins, who said Washington State is looking for him to play cornerback and special teams. "I talked with my mom and dad about it, and they said it would be a better fit for me."

Pippins had orally committed to Utah in October, but decided to take a trip to Washington State on Jan. 25.

"Why not take another one to see if I was making the right decision," said Pippins about his reasoning for the trip. "What really attracted me was the people at the school, the players. ... It felt like a college town. It's a growing program, so I felt like a great contributor there."

Another attraction was the chance to play college basketball for the Cougars.

"(Coach Mike Leach) said that as long as I could balance it out with football and school, I could try out," Pippins said.

Pippins also said that Utah asked him to gray-shirt after he came back from the trip. "I didn't like that too much," Pippins said. He said that he de-committed from Utah last week and committed to Washington State on Saturday.

Pippins was a first-team all-East Bay selection at defensive back last season.



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