DANVILLE, Calif. - Similar to Stanford’s rise to national football prominence in 2009, Brett Nottingham’s change of heart gradually swayed to Palo Alto.
The Monte Vista High School (Danville, Calif.) senior quarterback made it official on Friday, changing his college plans from UCLA to Stanford.
Nottingham, ranked the No. 16 pro style quarterback in the country by CBS recruiting expert Tom Lemming and a first-team All-California selection by MaxPreps.com, informed both Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh and UCLA coach Rick Neuheisel the news Friday night.
According to sources, Neuheisel didn’t take the news very well.
The 6-foot-4, 210-pound standout, who threw for 3,818 yards and 44 touchdowns with just six interceptions last season, had committed to UCLA in June. Stanford was always his No. 2 choice, according to Monte Vista assistant Chris Babcock and never pushed too hard.
Nottingham took an official visit to UCLA last week and Stanford on Friday.
Ultimately, Nottingham said Stanford’s education was the over-riding factor in him changing his mind. It didn’t hurt that two former teammates, tight end Zach Ertz and wide receiver Ryan Whalen, starred at Stanford last season.
“This is an important life decision and Stanford academics are in a league of their own,” Nottingham told Kyle Bonagura of the Contra Costa Times. “I’ve been thinking about my future a lot lately and the more I thought about it, the more I kept envisioning Stanford a part of it. A degree from Stanford will set you up for life.”
Nothing is still official yet. Not until a letter of intent is signed and delivered on Feb. 3.
“Brett feels this is the best fit for Brett and we support him 100 percent,” Babcock said. “He’s an absolutely fantastic kid, fantastic quarterback and leader. He’s a can’t miss kid.”
Nottingham doesn’t own the state's strongest arm, but he’s pinpoint accurate. He completed a remarkable 70 percent of his career attempts (460 of 654) for 6,939 yards, 79 touchdowns and 15 interceptions.