Why only two in-state commitments for Cougs?

THE COUGARS HAVE just two known state of Washington commitments in the 2014 class, one a verbal commit from the current cycle and one a holdover from last year's class. But there also looks to be a pretty good reason why that's the case.

The state historically produces roughly 25 to 40 FBS scholarship footballers a year. But this time around the talent pool isn't even close to that range.

Consider the following:

  • Only 16 in-state prospects have verbally committed to FBS schools so far, and just 21 total when adding in FCS schools.

  • Of those 21, only nine are committed to Pac-12 schools while a whopping 12 have pledged to either FCS or smaller conference schools such as Idaho, South Alabama, UNLV.

  • There is little "elite" talent in the class according to scout.com, with only three players in the state rated 4 stars and none 5 stars. Two of those 4 stars, by the way, are still available and both have WSU on their short lists (OL/DE Kaleb McGary and DL Marcus Griffin).

  • There's a paucity of both o-linemen and cornerbacks in the class, which tend to be two coveted positions.

    That's not exactly the recipe for a banner crop.

    HOW DOES THE '14 crop from the Evergreen State stack up?

    Last year, in a class that was considered decidedly average, the state produced 17 Pac-12 signees out of 46 total FBS and FCS signees. Washington State inked five of them last February.

    As for the future, the (too early) take on the 2015 in-state crop is that it will be a good deal deeper, though much is still to be determined. There are already six in-states in the Scout 2015 Top 300. The 2015 in-state class is unlikely to have big numbers of elite-type talent when all is said and done -- but quality depth looks to be decidedly above average.

  • WSU has a verbal pledge from Woodinville OL Andre Dillard this class. Eastside Catholic corner Markell Sanders from the '13 class officially joined the WSU football program this week.

  • Eastern Washington and Oregon State lead all comers this recruiting cycle with three state of Washington verbal commits apiece.

  • Washington has three in-state commitments as well but two come with caveats. One is a post graduate holdover from last year's UW class who doesn't plan to enroll until the spring. The other (Drew Lewis of Redmond) is a soft verbal visiting USC, the new home of the former UW coach he originally verballed to at Washington.

  • Interestingly, there are six QB verbals from the state in Mt. Si's Nick Mitchell, Oregon State; Skyline's Kilton Anderson, South Alabama; Camas' Reilly Hennessey, EWU; Marysville-Pilchuck's Jake Luton, Idaho; Auburn-Riverside's Kevin Thomson UNLV; and W.F. West's Tanner Gueller, Idaho State. (Click here for the state of Washington verbal commit list, does not include holdovers from previous classes.)

  • South Alabama (go figure, as none of the coaching staff appear to have obvious ties to the state of Washington) boasts two verbals from the state: Anderson and WR Josh Smith (Cascade).

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