State of Washington Top 20: Top-5

This year promises to be a banner year on the recruiting front in Washington. There are already five four star prospects listed by in the state and plenty have been drawing interest and offers from programs outside the region. has come up with a top 20 and today we look at the top five prospects we have rated on our list…

#5 - Federal Way ATH Chico McClatcher

Evaluation: Ever since we first saw him as an eighth-grader running sub-4.4 40's, we knew that Chico McClatcher was a special athlete. His size was always the biggest stumbling block, but the 5-foot-8, 175-pound McClatcher got stronger and even faster to handle the punishment running between the tackles for the Eagles. McClatcher went from being a role player on offense to being an every-down running back, not an easy feat. He's always had great hands, and his toughness is underrated. Chico doesn't shy away from sticking his nose ahead for extra yards in a pile, but his strength is sprinting for daylight and not stopping. His versatility as a return man and skill player on both sides of the ball is unquestioned.

Offers/Interest: Chico has standing offers from half the Pac-12: Washington, Washington State, Arizona, Arizona State, UCLA and Utah, as well as many other schools. He'll have his choice of programs when it's all said and done.

UW Fit: It's going to be very interesting to see how Washington recruits Chico going forward, especially since they already have one running back commitment in Myles Gaskin. Chico could be a receiver, he could be a return specialist, he could be a defensive back (probably not at the top of UW's War Room list there given his height), but the point is that his versatility is hard to ignore, as is his game-changing speed. Washington may simply recruit McClatcher as an offensive athlete, a player that can alter a game the same way Jaydon Mickens and John Ross can.
#4 - Marysville-Pilchuck RB Austin Joyner

Evaluation: Joyner, at 5-foot-11 and 190 pounds, already has a build to be a talented running back or defensive back at the Pac-12 level. Joyner is an incredibly productive back, running for over 3300 yards and 40 scores the last two years for Marysville-Pilchuck, averaging nearly 15 yards a carry. That's ridiculous. He played through injury for some of the 2013 season, so that shows toughness. Not only can Joyner run inside or outside but he also has very good hands and you can line him up anywhere on offense to do damage.

Offers/Interest: Besides in-state offers from Washington and Washington State, Joyner has also picked up rides from other Pac-12 schools, and most recently Arkansas. The Razorbacks' Running Backs Coach is former UW RB Coach Joel Thomas.

UW Fit: Joyner originally committed to Steve Sarkisian, but backed off that commitment once Sarkisian left for USC. It was expected to be simply a matter of time before Joyner would connect with the new UW staff and re-confirm his commitment, but that hasn't happened. Instead, Joyner is looking around and taking his time. As it is with McClatcher, the commitment of Myles Gaskin to the Huskies certainly puts an interesting spin on things. Add to it the idea that Joyner may fancy himself a defensive back in college and perhaps the new UW staff feels the same way. I have a hard time believing Joel Thomas would offer Joyner as a defensive athlete, but never say never. Personally Scout has always felt Joyner was a natural running back, so perhaps UW's future with Joyner depends on whether or not the Huskies decide to take more than one back.
#3 - O'Dea (Seattle) RB Myles Gaskin

Evaluation:'s Greg Biggins had a great evaluation of Gaskin that I completely agree with and sums up why the Huskies wanted to snatch him up for the 2015 class as soon as possible. "Gaskin is an impressive back on tape and shows great balance and the ability to take a hit, stay on his feet and makes a lot of yards after contact," Biggins said. "He has a nice burst, good top end speed and a nose for the end zone. He's both productive on the field and also has the physical tools that will translate very well in college."

Offers/Interest: Gaskin has standing scholarship offers from Washington, Washington State and Arizona State.

UW Fit: The fit for UW and Gaskin is a great one for both parties. Gaskin wanted to commit to the Huskies ever since meeting the new coaching staff on Junior Day, and clearly the new staff wanted Gaskin to commit early. This is one of those situations where ideally the staff wants to nail down commitments from the local studs to then start to recruit the supplemental pieces from Southern California, Hawaii, Texas, etc… - and it couldn't have worked out better. They've picked up a verbal commitment from a top running back, and it's a Seattle kid to boot.
#2 - Shadle Park (Spokane) QB Brett Rypien

Evaluation: Rypien, the nephew of WSU great Mark Rypien, has been a productive and prolific quarterback for Shadle Park. In 2013 he threw for 4,086 yards and 57 touchdowns. In one game versus Mount Spokane, Rypien threw for a state record 613 yards and eight touchdowns. At 6-foot-2 and 185 pounds Rypien won't blow you away with his physicality or athleticism, but he's got enough escapability to stay alive and make something out of nothing when plays break down. His arm strength is solid. He plays strictly out of the shotgun in high school. Rypien also plays the game with a very high football IQ, as his high school coaches gave him plenty of leeway and flexibility to tailor plays and audibles to fit what he saw at the line of scrimmage.

Offers/Interest: Rypien has offers from both the in-state schools, as well as Boise State, Oregon State, Mississippi State, and others.

UW Fit: It's been believed that Rypien, ever since he received his first verbal offer from Washington State back in November, 2012, has coveted a Washington offer - and he got one nearly six weeks ago. He's a prolific in-state quarterback with serious bloodlines (one of his uncles is former UW assistant Chris Tormey), and with quarterbacks committing earlier and earlier in the process the Huskies could be looking to land either Rypien or Folsom, California's Jake Browning sooner rather than later. It would set them up well for recruiting the rest of the 2015 class. Rypien, despite playing in a pass-happy offense at Shadle Park, has the ultimate goal of playing in the NFL. That's a big plus in the UW column because they will run a balanced attack that will prepare for similar looks at the next level. Chris Petersen talked about the two things every quarterback he recruits has to have: the ability to make good decisions, and is an accurate passer. Both of those traits apply to Rypien.
#1 - Bellevue OL Henry Roberts

Evaluation: Roberts comes from the most decorated program in the state, so you know he's been well-schooled on the fundamentals of playing along the offensive line. He also wears the coveted 52 jersey, one worn previously by such players as Steve Schilling, David DeCastro, and current UW tackle Jake Eldrenkamp. In fact, Roberts as a sophomore out-dueled current Boise State offensive lineman Marcus Henry for the right to wear 52, so you know he's a tough-minded player who shows a nasty streak when he has to. Roberts also shows a lot of versatility along the line as has shown he can play basically every position.

Offers/Interest: Roberts is one of those rare student-athlete that has already picked up scholarship offers from all 12 Pac-12 schools. Miami recently offered, and it's just a matter of time before a lot of other schools from outside the region come calling.

UW Fit: Washington was the first team to offer Roberts, nearly 14 months ago. It was ‘surreal' back then, according to Roberts. Now, with at least a dozen more offers under his belt, it's less about being surreal and more about what all the offers mean. Ever since Stanford followed up with a scholarship offer of their own, it's been believed the Huskies and Cardinal were neck-and-neck for Roberts' services. 2015 is an unbelievably deep class for offensive linemen, with four - Roberts, Calvin Throckmorton, Trey Adams, and Shane Lemieux - in this top-20 list. We have Roberts at the top of the list because, like Steve Schilling before him, he can be a tackle prospect the Huskies can build an offensive line around. He could have that kind of an impact on a program.
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