The Wyoming football coaching staff has now closed out their 2016 recruiting class with the signing of Eureka (CA) College of the Redwoods defensive tackle Hunter Van Emmerik.
The 6’4″, 280-pounder is originally from Ferndale, California, where he was named All-State following his senior year. He was also chosen to the Humboldt Del Norte first team in 2011 and 2012. Not only did he succeed on the football field but he also starred on the basketball court and baseball field, garnering All-HDN honors in basketball in 2011.
After high school, Van Emmerik originally signed with Humboldt State (D-II) but transferred before playing to chase his dreams of playing D-1 football. He has two years to play starting this fall.
Van Emmerik actually played basketball for College of the Redwoods in the spring after transferring from Humboldt State. He then landed a spot on the football roster during summer training. He went from about 220-pounds to 260-pounds in a year and found that he was built for football rather than basketball at that point in his career.
Van Emmerik officially visited Laramie on the weekend of March 25th where he was offered by the Cowboys coaching staff. Earlier, he had visited Portland State officially.
This is what he had to say about his visit to Laramie and the Wyoming campus:
“Everyone was very welcoming. The coaches treated my family and I very nicely and all the coaches were professional and really respectable. Laramie reminded us of our hometown (Ferndale, population 1382) because everyone is so behind the football program. It seemed like the whole town, and really the state, seemed to be behind their team.”
He was recruited by defensive end coach A.J. Cooper and defensive line coach Pete Kaligis.
Van Emmerik reports, “Coach Kaligis called me saying everyone loved my film and wanted me out for a visit. The coaching staff was very professional and kind to us, showed my family and me a great time on my visit.”
What led the California native to pick the Cowboys?
“We chose Wyoming because they really treated and spoke to me well as a player. They thought I could really make a difference on the team. They were the first D-1 school talking to me to really pull the trigger and offer me which we all liked because it made me feel wanted and respected.”
As a freshman, the defensive lineman earned first-team all-conference honors in the Golden Valley Conference. Even though he was mostly double-teamed and ran away from, he still racked up 28 tackles, one sack and five tackles-for-loss from his defensive end/tackle spot.
This past season he primarily played defensive end but will likely be a 3-tech defensive tackle once he steps onto campus.