Charles Watson is a defensive back from Hawaii’s Leilehua High School in Wahiawa. He primarily played safety and has ideal size for the position at 6-foot-2 and currently weighing 180 pounds. Missed a number of games during his senior year due to injury, which is part of why the Mules fell to a record of 5-8 after reaching the state semifinals as a junior. Scout rated him as a three star safety prospect, checking in as the #13 safety prospect in the West Region and #1 out of Hawaii. He was also considered the 7th best prospect to come out of Hawaii in the last cycle. Played in the first annual Polynesian Bowl in Hawaii, where he played for Team Stanley. Charles earned 1st Team All-State accolades as a senior and 2nd team recognition as a sophomore and junior.
LEAD OSU RECRUITER:
Chad Kauha’aha’a – Area/Primary
John Rushing -- Position
Watson had pledged to Washington State early on in the process. At the time, it was considered a big blow to the Beavers’ recruiting effort, as he was one of their top priority targets. However, Coach Chad remained in touch and convinced him to take an official visit to Corvallis late last September. Upon returning home from his visit, Watson made the decision to decommit from WSU and open up his recruitment. He would go on to take visits to BYU, Hawaii and San Diego State before making his final pledge to OSU at the Polynesian Bowl. Chose the Beavers over known offers from BYU, Hawaii, Colorado, Fresno State, San Diego State, San Jose State, UNLV, Vanderbilt, and Washington State. Throughout the course of his recruitment he had a number of other Power-5 conference programs in contact with him including Washington, Notre Dame, and Michigan to name a few.
WHY OREGON STATE:
As told to ESPN after making his commitment on live TV:
“It’s a beautiful place. When I took my visit, it reminded me of Wahiawa. A lot of trees, real cool temperature. They have great coaches, great facilities. It’s always been my dream to play for a Pac-12 school.”
Very athletic defensive back… Smooth in back pedal with loose hips, able to turn and drive with receivers on their breaks… Good ball skills… Has good burst and above average top end speed…Takes good angles to make tackles along the edge… Closes to line of scrimmage well in run support… Will need to continue to add weight/muscle before ready to contribute efficiently as he was announced at 180 pounds but it appears that it is a “light” 180… Also would like to see him improve his form tackling…
INSIDE THE COMMITMENT:
Watson chose the Beavers over BYU and it was a huge get for the program. It not only continued to build upon the pipeline between the islands and Corvallis, it also addressed a big need. When the staff missed out on JUCO Brian Cole at the early signing day, it made the safety position all the more vital heading towards the spring to signing day. The staff zeroed in on Watson, and Trajon Cotton, and were able to secure commitments from arguably their two highest profile recruits in the month of January. Both are versatile enough that they could also line-up opposite receivers in the defense’s nickel package. With Watson, there was some concern that BYU might have snuck into the lead for his commitment. Coach Chad’s frequent trips to the islands with other coaches helped swing things back into the Beavers’ favor. Isaiah Hodgins, Jeffrey Manning and several other recruits also played a pivotal role in securing Watson’s pledge.