By Chadd Cripe
© 2012 Idaho Statesman
The Boise State football coaches spent about a year recruiting and researching Paradise Valley High (Phoenix) quarterback Ryan Finley.
On Wednesday, the Broncos made their decision — offering Finley a scholarship during his unofficial visit to campus.
On Friday, Finley reciprocated — giving the Broncos an oral commitment.
Finley (6-foot-4, 180 pounds) will join the Broncos in the 2013 recruiting class. He plans to enroll in August of that year. He’s a junior at Paradise Valley, the same school that produced Boise State cornerback Ebo Makinde.
Boise State was the first school to show interest in Finley last year and the first Football Bowl Subdivision school to offer him a scholarship, Paradise Valley coach Donnie Yantis said.
“It really is a perfect match,” Yantis said. “… He throws it to the right spot at the right velocity and helps receivers catch the ball. He can make every throw on the field. That kid is very special.”
Finley was 239-of-381 for 2,911 yards and 25 touchdowns with seven interceptions last season. Paradise Valley ran the Air Raid offense, like Hal Mumme ran at New Mexico State. Paradise Valley started 4-1 but finished 4-6.
He also plays basketball, scoring 18 points per game, and was the No. 1 tennis player and high jumper at Paradise Valley as a sophomore. Finley plans to compete in track this spring but not tennis.
He has a 35-inch vertical jump, has run the 40-yard dash in 4.6 seconds and sports a 4.5 GPA.
“The kid is very intelligent,” Yantis said. “He’s a high-character kid.”
The schools that had shown the most interest included Arizona State, Arizona, UCLA, Northwestern and Cal, Finley said.
Finley was told he was the third quarterback offered by the Broncos, who usually take one quarterback per class. The first two, according to hometown newspaper reports, were Cooper Bateman of Salt Lake City and Jared Goff of Kentfield, Calif. Both have four-star ratings from Scout.com. Finley hasn't been rated yet.
“I was so excited about Boise State when I got home,” Finley said. “… I was pretty confident that I wanted to play for Boise State. When I actually got to the campus and met with some coaches and talked with some players and the people around the town, that’s when it clicked with me that was definitely a place I wanted to play.”
As for whether he might change his mind, Finley said: “I’m really confident (in the choice). I’m sure in my heart that I want to be a Boise State Bronco.”
2013 RECRUITING CLASS
— LB Joe Martarano, 6-3, 215, Fruitland HS
— TE Alec Dhaenens, 6-4, 235, Fruitland HS
— QB Ryan Finley, 6-4, 180, Paradise Valley HS (Phoenix)