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Students Sign National Letters of Intent
Students Sign National Letters of Intent
Posted on 11/23/2016

Ten student-athletes in the Puyallup School District signed National Letters of Intent (NLI) to universities of their choice on the November 9th, National Signing Day.

NLIs may be voluntarily signed by prospective student-athletes who will be entering a four-year university for the first time in the academic year after they sign the NLI.

After a student has signed an NLI to a four- year university the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) forbids any further efforts from other institutions to recruit that student. Students who have signed an NLI must attend the school to which that student signed in order to receive financial aid.

The NLI was created in 1964 by Dr. J. William Davis to keep other universities from recruiting an athlete after that athlete committed to going to a four- year university.

Fifty years later in 2014 there was a historic NLI signing when Dr. Davis’s great-granddaughter, Jessica Davis, a senior at Emerald Ridge High School, signed her NLI to the University of Colorado.

“I don’t think he had a thought in the world that his great-granddaughter would sign one,” said Jessica’s grandmother Lynn Davis.

The NCAA marked her NLI signing as a 50-year milestone for college sports and something of a Davis family legacy celebrating the four-generation connection between Jessica, the Emerald Ridge volleyball player who signed a national letter of intent, and her great-grandfather J. William Davis, the man who established it.

The 10 student-athletes who signed their NLIs on the November 9th will be continuing a tradition of excellence by furthering their post-high school education as student athletes in a university setting.

Emerald Ridge High School:
Lance Slichko, Cross Country, Seattle University 

Puyallup High School:

Geneva Thompson, University of Washington, Gymnastics


Maddy Besaw, Stony Brook University (NY), Fast Pitch

Michael Newstrom, Washington State University, Baseball

Michael Spellacy, Gonzaga University, Baseball

Natalie Joyner, University of Northern Colorado, Fast Pitch


Rogers High School:

Jessi Westering, Pepperdine University, Basketball


Kolby Force, Concordia University, Baseball

Malaina Thacker, University of Idaho, Track/Cross Country

Tayler Dawes, Seattle University, Fastpitch

Director of Instructional Leadership - Athletics, Health and Fitness, Rick Wells, celebrated the students’ commitment saying, “NLIs represent the culmination of many years of hard work, commitment, determination, and dedication.  We are proud of these student-athletes who have demonstrated that such values and character traits -- rooted in self-discipline -- often result in prized benefit.”

November 9th was the first National Signing Day of the school year. The legacy of the Davis family will
continue as NLIs are signed during future National Signing Dates:

Football - February 1, 2017
Soccer and Men’s Water Polo- February 1, 2017
Basketball- April 12, 2017