"An old school lineman..."

Western Washington standout prep offensive lineman BILAL LIGGINS (6-3, 250) was just starting to get some looks from a number of programs when he committed to Idaho first year head coach Robb Akey. Signed last month, Liggins was impressed with the campus, facilities, players and coaches. One of three offensive line prospects in this recruiting class, he may also get a shot on the defensive line.

This article was compiled from several sources, including published season statistics, previous Scout reports, various other media resources, and Scout.com conversations with Lakes High School Football Coach Dave Miller.

PLAYER PROFILE: Bilal Liggins, 6-3, 250, OL/DE

Make no mistake about it...the focus of this recruiting class was to load up on players with speed. Of the 21 signed this past February, 15 were wide receivers, defensive backs, linebackers and runningbacks.

One of the common traits of this group - the entire group - is versatility...kids who can play DB or WR, LB or RB, or a number of other combinations.

Idaho has recently had some success with this, the most shining example being Stanley Franks, signed by Idaho last year as a junior college wide receiver who transitioned to cornerback during spring drills and went on to lead the nation last year in interceptions, earn First Team All-WAC honors, and be named to at least one All-American publication. Granted, not every recruit is going to show this level of versatility, but it is definitely a trend worth watching.

The same can be said in the trenches, and high school recruit Bilal Liggins could be among those hosses given a chance on both lines. Signed as an offensive linemen, he could get his shot at defensive end or on the interior defensive line.

"Bilal has great feet and is very athletic for a big man," Lakes head coach Dave Miller told Scout.com several weeks ago. "He is very durable and mentally tough. He is an old school linemen all the way down to the vise-grip handshake."

The Vandals landed three offensive linemen in this class, among them Liggins, who reportedly never missed a down as a two-way, two-year starter for the Lancers. A dominant force up front, he helped pave the way for an offense that averaged 32 points per game, and helped lead his team to a 9-2 oeverall record and an appearance in the state playoffs.

Liggins was named an Honorable Mention AP All-State Class 3A selection this season as an offensive lineman, as well as being named to the Tacoma News Tribune All-Area Team and the Washington Preps Class 3A All-State Second Team. He earned All-Western Cascade Conference honors this year as an offensive lineman (earned second team honors as a junior), and was considered one of the area's top offensive line prospects. Not surprisingly, Liggins was a team captain this season for the Lancers.

"Bilal is a hard worker and has huge upside potential," coach Miller went on to say. "My guess is Bilal will get his first look on offense, but it wouldn't surprise me if he played defensive end."

Off the field, Liggins put as much into his game as he did on the field. In the weightroom he reportedly has a 320-pound bench, 455-pound squat and 270-pound clean. The effort earned him attention, as The Seattle Times reported that he was being recruited by Air Force, Boise State, Idaho State, Portland State and Eastern Washington before signing with the Vandals.

According to USA Today, Liggins was one of the top THREE recruits in the class, joining DE/LB Andre Ferguson ("...a top-100 defensive end by virtually every recruiting outlet in the nation.") and RB Corey White ("...has the make-up of becoming the big-time playmaking back this program has so desperately needed."). What did USA Today have to say about Liggins? "Liggins might need a year of seasoning, but he's a big-time recruit who could've signed with a more high-profile program."

Maybe the combination of these three recruits (and the rest of the class), along with two All-WAC First Teamers, a Freshman All-American, and the young talent across the board already in the roster will get this program back to the winning ways it enjoyed for almost 20 years uninterrupted. We know it was one of the reasons for Liggins picking Idaho...

"Bilal loved the campus, facilities, and especially fit in with the players and coaches," Coach Miller told Scout. "He loved the enthusiasm of Coach Akey. Bilal is excited to be a part building the program back to a high level."

And we're excited to watch him get it done.

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