UW Offensive Recruiting – OL

This has been an area that was neglected for a while and the focus has really been on getting more athletes to work into the depth chart. The Huskies loaded up on talent for this unit in 2003 signing five offensive lineman (although one has since left the program). Last year the Dawgs only took two linemen, so it is imperative that they focus their attention on this spot. Look for Willie Kava to take up one of these coveted spots, as he is returning from his Mormon mission.

Offensive Line (4 or 5): Pasco, Washington's OL Ryan Tolar (6-5, 335) is widely considered the second best lineman in the state, behind Steve Schilling and after all the camps he verbally committed to Washington. "I went to camp up there (Seattle) and for a while I knew it would be coming down to a few schools," Tolar told Dawgman.com when he made his commitment. "I knew Nebraska and Washington were going to be right there. But the more time I spent up there the more I knew that even nationally, if I could pick any school I wanted to go to, I would want to go to Washington." Tolar has been a dominant force in the Big-9 conference for two years and will be motivated to bring another 4A state title home for the Bulldogs.

Bellevue, Washington's Schilling (6-5, 295) is Scout.com's second-ranked offensive lineman nationally and is the Huskies' top priority in the trenches. He is a monster and an incredible athlete who consistently gets 30 or 40 yards downfield to block safeties when the running back breaks free. He is still growing into his frame and will only be 17 when he enrolls in college. He has the tools to start right away and will likely choose his school after the football season. His top schools are Washington and Michigan, but he is also considering Miami, Oregon, Nebraska, USC and UCLA. He has been to Montlake several times and two of his closest friends, Husky signees J.R. Hasty and E.J. Savannah, will be enrolling at Washington this fall. Washington has an edge because of location and familiarity, but his commitment is far from sewn up.

Springfield (Ohio) South's Lee Tilley (6-5, 321) is another one of the best linemen in the country, sporting at least 25 offers. He is huge and athletic. He has very quick feet. He graded out at 98% and allowed no sacks as a junior; Graded out at 96% and did not allow a sack as a sophomore. Tilley earned first team All-Southwest Ohio, All-County, first team All-State, and first team All-League as a junior. He has narrowed his list to 12 and is not considering any new schools. He and his family both love Washington Head Coach Tyrone Willingham and he has no objections with moving to the west coast. Getting Tilley is a longshot, but if the Huskies get an official visit then anything can happen. The list of schools Tilley is considering are Georgia, Cincinnati, Arizona State, Auburn, Florida, Oklahoma, LSU, N.C. State, Clemson, South Carolina, Virginia Tech and Washington.

Cody Pope (6-5, 275) from San Diego (Calif.) University is another offensive line prospect the Huskies have offered and he had a really good workout at the Scout.com All-American Combine at El Camino College in Torrance, California. Washington has had some success in San Diego recruiting linemen, as Lincoln Kennedy, Khalif Barnes and Stanley Daniels have all come from that part of the world. Cody has prototypical size for a lineman and a bit of a nasty streak in him. Besides Washington, Pope has received early offers from Colorado, San Diego State, Fresno State, Idaho and Idaho State. He lists UW, CU, USC, SDSU and Oklahoma as his current favorites.

Los Angeles (Calif.) Dorsey's Cleveland Jones (6-4, 300) is a versatile lineman that could be a DT or OG in college. His versatility has garnered three early offers - from Washington, Washington State and Arizona - and the Wildcats are looking strong in this current three-horse race. Jone might not be getting as much attention at teammates Jovon Hayes and Stafon Johnson - arguably the best players in the west at their respective positions - but he's a productive player. He's been vocal in the past about leaving the state and the Huskies have recruited Dorsey well in the past. Former RB Beno Bryant and current DT Jasper Henry both prepped as Dons.

Of the rest of the local prospects, the best bet for an offer just might be Chris Bush (6-5, 275) from Puyallup Rogers. Not related to UW center Ryan Bush (who also attended Rogers, ironically enough), the other Bush had a very nice spring and summer campaign, topped off with a stellar effort at the Oregon Nike camp. He's already received an offer from Indiana and more should be on the way.

Olympia (Wash.) Capital OL/DL Alex Linnenkohl (6-3, 290) is an option on either side of the ball. He is an excellent athlete and he long-snaps. He projects as either a center or a defensive tackle at the next level and he is starting to garner a lot of interest from schools outside the region. He just attended the Wake Forest top prospects camp (his brother plays baseball for the Demon Deacons) and he is hearing a lot from Michigan State. Our last update from Linnenkohl was that Washington had been sending him things, but nothing hand-written. It appears UW is playing the "wait-and-see" game with him, but they better not wait all season to get in the game if they are genuinely interested. He has no offers to date, but that should change soon. He favors Washington, Washington State, Oregon, Oregon State, Michigan State and Wake Forest over all other schools.

Another intriguing prospect is Ryan Griffith (6-6, 250) from Rancho Cucamonga (Calif.) Los Osos. Ryan made his case as one of Southern California's top linemen at the Scout.com All-American Combine at El Camino. Offensive Coordinator Tim Lappano is of the belief that lighter linemen are ideal because he likes faster, quicker linemen the program can bulk up. Griffith appears to be an ideal candidate for that type of thinking and he was also at Washington's summer camp, but it still is yet to be determined if the Huskies are going to offer. The main question with Ryan is, is he maybe too light? If he can show some physical growth this fall - a 10-20 pound gain in weight without any noticeable changes to his speed and quickness - don't be surprised to see a number of teams, including Washington, to offer.

Tigard, Oregon's Mau Nomani (6-4, 280), is another player that looked lean enough in person to build on. Nomani had a good showing at the Scout.com All-American combine in Berkeley, and as such it's not surprising that Mau has received offers from schools like BYU, Oregon, Oregon State and Nebraska. Washington has been showing their interest as well, but they'll need to put the heat on to beat out the in-state schools even if they decide to offer.

OL/DL Whitley Fehoko (6-1, 298) from Honolulu (Hawaii) Farrington is one from the islands to keep an eye on this fall. He raised some eyebrows when he put up 225 pounds 24 times (most high school athletes bench 185 at workouts) and even though he doesn't have the ideal height, he just looks like a player. Whitley has already verbally committed to Utah, but don't think that other schools - including Washington, USC, UCLA, Oklahoma, BYU, Boise State and Cal to try and woo Whitley away from SLC.

Other prospects to keep an eye on: Mikel Camus (6-2, 290) Olympia (Wash.) Capital.; Grady Maxwell (6-3, 312) Tacoma (Wash.) Curtis; Jimmie Carmack (6-5, 290) Rolling Hills (Calif.) Palos Verdes Estates; Nick Bassett (6-4, 270) Gig Harbor (Wash.) Peninsula; Micah Hannam (6-5, 280) Gig Harbor (Wash.) Peninsula

Outlook: The Huskies seem to have an abundance of guards on their roster but only a couple true tackles. Tolar, Schilling and Tilley can all play tackle and they would make a very nice threesome to anchor the Husky line in the future. Linnenkohl is a leader who is smart and seems like he wants to stay close to home. Fehoko would be an ideal guard or center. The offensive line for the Huskies is just starting to achieve the depth needed to be a strength of the team and a solid class of five prospects would go a long way toward reaching that depth goal.

Soon to come: Defensive Recruiting

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