Updated Saturday, January 12, 2013 at 10:01 PM
A common college football adage is that recruiting classes are best judged three or four years down the road. Those who do the grading in real time, though, say the Washington Huskies are putting together a class that rates among the best in the nation.
That's the highest rating for a UW class since its 2001 group (led by standout receivers Reggie Williams and Charles Frederick) was rated fifth by Rivals. UW's Class of 2010 had a No. 11 rating by Scout, though not by Rivals, which judged it 28th.
"This is a very good class," said Mason Kelley, who covers UW and Northwest recruiting for ESPN.com's HuskyNation site. "They've addressed a lot of different needs at a lot of different positions."
And like every other school, the Huskies are far from done as the recruiting season heats up with the Feb. 6 letter-of-intent signing day nearing. UW hosted 10 recruits this weekend (six of whom were already committed to UW) and will also host recruits the following three weekends.
Washington's class includes 21 commits, including two who have already enrolled, quarterback Troy Williams and safety Trevor Walker.
Williams is one of nine players in the class regarded as a four-star recruit by Scout.com. Eleven others are three-star recruits.
Jake Worthen, a recruiting analyst for Scout.com/FoxSports, said UW fans should be "ecstatic" about the class the Huskies are assembling. Worthen said UW's class is third in the Pac-12 behind USC and UCLA, but could move higher if the Huskies can reel in a few of the bigger names left on their board.
One of those is linebacker Reuben Foster of Auburn, Ala., who was scheduled to visit this weekend. Foster is rated by Scout.com as the top middle linebacker prospect in the country. UW also has extended offers to two of his friends, defensive tackle Joe Sanders and offensive tackle Maurice Swain, each of LaGrange, Ga. All three visited UW this weekend.
Kelley and Worthen think it's still a longshot that Foster will sign with UW. He had committed to Auburn, but reopened his recruiting when Tigers coach Gene Chizek was fired.
UW also remains in the running for one of the best defensive tackles in the country, Eddie Vanderdoes of Auburn, Calif., though Kelley and Worthen believe chances are somewhat remote that he will sign with the Huskies.
Each, though, believes the Huskies still have a good chance to get Bellevue linebacker Myles Jack, who committed to UCLA before the season but is taking all five of his official visits. He is at Arizona State this weekend, then is scheduled to visit UCLA, UW and Oregon.
Each think the recent hire of Marques Tuiasosopo as Washington's new quarterbacks coach will help UW. Tuiasosopo had spearheaded UCLA's recruiting of Jack. Worthen said he believes Jack's decision will come down to "Oregon, UCLA and Washington, and obviously with Marques Tuiasosopo coming up here as his primary recruiter at UCLA, that can't hurt Washington."
Another player Kelley and Worthen believe UW may still be able to land is offensive lineman Nico Falah of St. John Bosco High in Bellflower, Calif., the school attended by Huskies quarterback Keith Price. Falah, rated four stars by both Scout.com and Rivals.com, had committed to USC but recently visited Washington and is seriously considering the Huskies.
A commitment by Falah would shore up what is regarded as the one position group where the Huskies could still use another body or two.
"It's the one area where they have some work to do," Worthen said.
UW has commits from two players listed as offensive linemen, and from two defensive players who could end up on offense. But the Huskies lost commitments from two other projected offensive linemen.
Analysts, though, rave about the rest of the class. Williams is regarded as one of the top dual-threat quarterback prospects in the country. UW has commits from three of the top receiver prospects on the West Coast.
Kelley said "they've done a fantastic job on defense," including landing one of the top defensive tackle prospects in the West in Elijah Qualls, as well as defensive end Joe Mathis, who played last week in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl.
"You look at the guys that Washington has brought in on defense and they've really addressed every position really well, I think," Kelley said. "The defensive line is probably where they are strongest right now. Linebacker looks pretty good. Even in the defensive backs, with two corners and a safety, they have addressed a lot of needs."
Bob Condotta: 206-515-5699 or firstname.lastname@example.org. On Twitter @bcondotta.
|Players who have been reported to have publicly committed to sign with Washington:|
|CB||Kevin King||6-3, 180||Oakland (Bishop O Dowd High School)|
|WR||Darrell Daniels||6-3, 220||Oakley, Calif. (Freedom)|
|DE||Daeshon Hall||6-6, 220||Lancaster, Texas (Lancaster)|
|CB||Jermaine Kelly||6-2 185||Los Angeles (Bishop Mora Salesian)|
|DE||Joe Mathis||6-4, 255||Upland, Calif. (Upland)|
|WR||John Ross||5-11, 175||Long Beach, Calif. (Jordan)|
|LB||Azeem Victor||6-4, 215||Pomona, Calif. (Pomona)|
|TE||David Ajamu||6-6, 245||Shelton (Shelton)|
|DE||Marcus Farria||6-4, 220||Peoria, Ariz. (Centennial)|
|G||Andrew Kirkland||6-5, 290||Portland (Jesuit)|
|WR||Demore'ea Stringfellow||6-3, 215||Moreno Valley, Calif. (Rancho Verde)|
|RB||Lavon Coleman||5-11, 210||Lompoc, Calif. (Lompoc)|
|DT||Elijah Qualls||6-2, 280||Petaluma, Calif. (Casa Grande HS)|
|DT||Andrew Basham||6-4, 305||Lynnwood (Lynnwood)|
|K||Cameron Van Winkle||5-11, 165||Snoqualmie (Mount Si)|
|LB||Connor O'Brien||6-3, 205||Santa Margarita, Calif. (Santa Margarita Catholic)|
|C||Dane Crane||6-3, 295||Santa Margarita, Calif. (Santa Margarita Catholic)|
|LB||Sean Constantine||6-2, 230||Bellevue (Bellevue)|
|DT||Jaimie Bryant||6-5, 260||Tumwater (Tumwater)|
|Note: Two players have already enrolled at UW, safety Trevor Walker (5-11, 179, Mansfield Timberview of Arlington, Texas) and quarterback Troy Williams (6-2, 192, Narbonne of Los Angeles)|
UW commitmentsPlayers who have reported to have publicly committed to sign with Washington:
CB Kevin King, 6-3, 180, Oakland (Bishop O Dowd High School)
WR Darrell Daniels, 6-3, 220, Oakley, Calif. (Freedom)
DE Daeshon Hall, 6-6, 220, Lancaster, Texas (Lancaster)
CB Jermaine Kelly, 6-2 185, Los Angeles (Bishop Mora Salesian)
DE Joe Mathis, 6-4, 255, Upland, Calif. (Upland)
WR John Ross, 5-11, 175, Long Beach, Calif. (Jordan)
LB Azeem Victor, 6-4, 215, Pomona, Calif. (Pomona)
TE David Ajamu, 6-6, 245, Shelton (Shelton)
DE Marcus Farria, 6-4, 220, Peoria, Az. (Centennial)
G Andrew Kirkland, 6-5, 290, Portland (Jesuit)
WR Demore'ea Stringfellow, 6-3, 215, Moreno Valley, Calif. (Rancho Verde)
RB Lavon Coleman, 5-11, 210, Lompoc, Calif. (Lompoc)
DT Elijah Qualls, 6-2, 280, Petaluma, Calif. (Casa Grande HS)
DT Andrew Basham, 6-4, 305, Lynnwood (Lynnwood)
K Cameron Van Winkle, 5-11, 165 Snoqualmie (Mount Si)
LB Connor O'Brien, 6-3, 205, Santa Margarita, Calif. (Santa Margarita Catholic)
C Dane Crane, 6-3, 295, Santa Margarita, Calif. (Santa Margarita Catholic)
LB Sean Constantine, 6-2, 230, Bellevue (Bellevue)
DT Jaimie Bryant, 6-5, 260, Tumwater (Tumwater)
Note: Two players have already enrolled at UW, safety Trevor Walker (5-11, 179, Mansfield Timberview of Arlington, Texas) and quarterback Troy Williams (6-2, 192, Narbonne of Los Angeles).