UW Football: Recruiting class thoughts

Seattle Side Up Abraham Profile PicWith Signing Day having come and gone, the 2nd recruiting class for Washington Head Coach, Chris Petersen, lacked much distraction or drama.

The concern coming from Boise State was if Petersen is capable of recruiting against PAC 12 teams.

Although finishing in the middle of the PAC, Petersen came up with a very balanced class and a premier quarterback.   The breakdown by position:

(A complete breakdown can be found here)

  • 1 Quarterback
  • 1 Halfback
  • 4 Receivers
  • 1 Tight end
  • 3 Offensive linemen
  • 7 Defensive linemen
  • 4 Line backers
  • 3 Defensive back
  • 1 Long snapper

Most impressively, Chris Petersen “put up a fence” and kept 6 of the 7 top in-state talents, bringing them to Washington.

Top Prospects

The top prize of the 2015 class is 6’2 QB Jake Browning from Folsom, Ca.   Browning led Folsom to a 16-0 record in 2014 and has including the National high school record career touchdown passes (229).   Browning earned the California Gatorade Player of the Year award two years in a row. Browning is the son of former Oregon State QB Ed Browning.   Potential to challenge Cyler Miles or K.J. Carta-Samuels for the starting QB spot in spring.

The other player to look out for is DB/RB and Gatorade Player of the year in Washington, Austin Joyner. Playing both sides other ball as a running back and DB, he may see time at running back, a la Shaq Thompson.   His speed and athleticism has him available for a host of different positions on offense, defence, and special teams.   Potential to make an immediate impact.

A Reach

There are not many reaches; the only one that raised an eyebrow is basketball player Jared Hilbers from Beverton, OR.   At 6-6, 279 lbs, Jared could project as a monster on the offensive line; however, he is will need to develop his game a bit more. His size and athleticism though should be a boon to the young offensive line at UW.

Flip of the Coin

The one recruit that got away was 4 star running back Chris Warren, who at 6-2 240lbs, could have been the bruising downhill runner that the Huskies haven’t had in a while. Warren chose to stay closer to home in Rockwell, TX by selecting the University of Texas over Washington. It was not so much who he selected rather how he selected Texas.  Chris Warren filpped a coin, the coin landed Heads for Texas.

Our Kind of Guy

Jake Browning is known more for character and commitment to UW, to the point of enrolling early; this is typical of what Chris Petersen looks for in recruits.   A Petersen recruit is “our kind of guy” (OKG). These are recruits who have an unwavering commitment to the program.

Missing out on only a couple recruits is typical for Petersen.   He rarely goes all out for a person who is on the fence, to the point where he informs recruits if they take visits to other schools there may not be a scholarship for them at a later point. The theme being that Peterson recruits are students who are a culture fit; a player who will run through a wall for the Purple and Gold.

However, this may alienate potentially more talented players, which we saw when Petersen expelled future NFL Corner Back Marcus Peters earlier in the year for fighting with coaches. Ty Willingham had a fervent commitment to “high character” guys as well.   Willingham’s teams were unable to produce results on the field, and an overbearing attitude lead to an all out revolt on the team.

Ultimately, this approach worked well at Boise State for Petersen.  After 3-4 years, we will see if the commitment to “good character guys” also translates into wins.

PAC 12 Standing

Team 5 star 4 Star 3 star Total signees
1.    USC 4 14 8 26
2.    UCLA 3 11 6 20
3.    Oregon 1 6 15 22
4.    Arizona St 0 8 14 22
5.    Stanford 0 5 17 22
6.    Washington 0 5 18 24
7.    California 0 3 19 24
8.    Arizona 0 1 24 25
9.    Utah 0 0 23 23
10.  Washington St 0 1 17 21
11.  Colorado 0 1 15 19
12.  Oregon St 0 0 17 18

 

National Rankings

1.    USC
2.    Alabama
3.    Auburn
4.    Tennessee
5.    Georgia
6.    Notre Dame
7.    Texas
8.    Ohio State
9.    UCLA
10.  Texas A&M

 

 

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News Reporter
Abraham DeWeese is an avid local sports fan and a “Man-About-Town” in the Seattle sports scene. He's a lifelong resident of the Seattle area, living in the beautiful Greenlake neighborhood.