Jermaine Kelly commits to Washington

What he made private a week ago, he decided to make public today. Los Angeles (Calif.) Salesian defensive back Jermaine Kelly has committed to Washington.

The Huskies are putting together a great recruiting class and just landed a player who might have more upside than any other corner in the West region. Jermaine Kelly was an early commitment to UCLA but the Huskies never stopped recruiting him and it paid off in a big way.

"I actually told Coach Sark and Coach Keith (Heyward) last week," Kelly said. "It came down to Washington and Boise State for me and both are great programs. I just felt like Washington was a better fit academically and the opportunities the school can provide after football are pretty incredible.

"From a football standpoint, I really like Coach Heyward a lot. He's not just a great coach, he's a mentor and someone who will shape me as a player and as a person. He was the coach I always felt most comfortable with the whole process, even when I was committed to UCLA. Whenever I had questions, he always had the answer for me and I can't wait to go and play for him."

Kelly said he sees some special things happening with the Husky program right now.

"They're bringing in an incredible recruiting class right now and we aren't done yet," Kelly said. "They have a ton of young talent on the roster and I think they're ready for a big run next year. They have a great coaching staff and every time I visited Washington, I always felt that family bond there that I didn't see at other schools.

"They really care about you there as more than just a football player and I know I'll grow a lot as a person being away from home. Right now, I'm just going to work as hard as I can so when I get there next year, I'll be ready to play. I want to play right away, coach Heyward told me he wants me on the field and I don't want to redshirt, I want to get out there and compete from day one."

Kelly has a significant upside and could have more potential than any other corner in the region. At 6-1, 175 pounds, he has a long, lean frame that will fill out without losing any of his athleticism. Kelly has very good speed, an explosive burst and a great ball skills.

His senior film is about as good as you'll see and he's just as impressive as a receiver/kick returner as a corner. It's usually a stretch to try and have a player play on both sides of the ball at the college level but Kelly is someone who could pull it off.

"I'm really relieved to have this all behind me, it was a stressful process," Kelly said. "I had a few trips set up in January but I didn't want to waste anyone's time. I figured the sooner I committed, the sooner those schools could move on and recruit someone else. I knew in my heart it was Washington for me so there was no need to drag things out.

"I really learned a lot through this whole process, it was all pretty eye opening. In the end, I think everything worked out the way it was supposed to. I'm a Dawg, it's where I'm supposed to be and I can't wait to get there next year and get going."

Greg Biggins has been covering recruiting for over 15 years, covering the West since the mid-1990's and currently serves as a national analyst for
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