Husky recruiting at a glance
THE GOOD - This class has balance. The fact that nine (possibly 10) of the players are big bodies makes me smile. Big guys are the best prospects to take gambles on because they take the longest to develop anyways. You get these guys into your program, teach them and get them strong, and then you see which guys push up through the depth and contribute over three to four years. Well done, Tyrone.
THE BAD - Decommits. Washington suffered three decommits, which in itself is a big deal, but it was the quality of the defections that hurt the most. James Montgomery may never play a down, but in the recruiting game, he was a four-star hit. Cody Pope was an "A-lister", but was also an offensive lineman so we likely wouldn't have seen him for another two years anyway. In that time, one of the kids in the current class may have stepped up and made us forget that Tennessee stole a potentially good offensive lineman from the Dawgs. The one that hurt the most in my mind was Coye Francies, who by all indications is a shut down corner and a speedy return guy, something the Huskies desperately need. Oregon State's pilferage of Francies, thanks to former Husky and current Beaver assistant coach Nigel Burton, was the toughest to swallow.
THE RISKY - Washington signed SEVEN JC kids and are hoping for an 8th to arrive in the summer. The school has never brought in that many juco players in one class, which shows that Tyrone Willingham wanted to bring in kids that could contribute immediately on the OL, WR, DL, and in the secondary. The risk here is that those kids now have to qualify academically and matriculate to Washington. That is never a done deal, so now the Husky coaches will have to baby-sit, keep their fingers crossed, and keep in touch with JC coaches, counselors, and the kids to make sure they are getting it done.
DAWGMAN's EARLY 2006 CAPSULES :
Before any of these kids set foot on campus, here are my predictions and projections on how the class of 2006 might progress and fit into the Husky football program over the next few years. This is just for fun and of course pure speculation.
OFFENSIVE LINE: 5
Sir Aaron Mason - He needs to get bigger, but Mason is extremely athletic and the Huskies need tackles. If he's strong enough and he arrives next fall at around 290-295, he might crack the depth in 2006. Projection: If Ben Ossai is ready, Mason may be allowed a redshirt in 2006 while he bulks up. He is a potential starter at offensive tackle in 2007-2008. This guy's feet make him a bona fide WT candidate.
Cody Habben - Redshirt in 2006, toil in the depth in 2007, crack the 9 man rotation by 2008 at tackle. Starter by junior season in 2009. Love the attitude – has the nasty streak that has been missing.
Ryan Tolar - Redshirt in 2006 while he slims down, toil in the depth in 2007 and 2008, crack the rotation by 2009, possibly starting by then and in 2010. This kid defines toughness, and should add quality depth at strong tackle.
Matt Sedillo - Redshirt in 2006 while he polishes the green, toil in the depth in 2007 and hopefully will be ready to step in for Juan Garcia in 2008. That may be asking a lot too early, but that's where the depth is right now.
Brandon Jefferson - Need to get him into school, but if he makes it, has the body and athleticism to be a potential weak tackle. Would be nice to see he and Mason push each other, but Jefferson would probably be counted on as early as 2006 to provide depth behind Macklin and Ossai and give Habben time to develop.
Jake Locker - Arm strength, quickness, toughness, and the ability to absorb coaching at an alarming rate makes Locker a legit candidate to move right up the depth chart and challenge for the starting role early in the 2006 season if necessary. Be sure to read Tim Lappano's comments in the Sports Washington recruiting issue regarding Montlake Jake if you think I'm over hyping this kid.
RUNNING BACK: 2
Leilyon Myers - I'm not sure Myers will stay at tailback but numbers will necessitate him starting his career here. Not a burner but might be a nice option as a receiver out of the backfield and a between the tackles runner. Redshirt in 2006, toil in the depth in 2007 and 2008 while he finds his niche in Willingham's program. I see him winding up at safety.
FB Paul Homer - This kid is intriguing because he is so athletic. Lappano wants him on offense because he feels he'll be a threat as a receiver out of the backfield. I think Homer plays in 2006 if he proves to be a good enough route runner. Potential four-year starter at fullback.
WIDE RECEIVER: 3
Matt Mosley - Redshirt in 2006 while he adds strength. His speed makes him an attractive split end. If he shows good hands and can run good routes, look for him to crack the rotation as early as 2007 and may become a starter in 2008 as a sophomore.
D'Andre Goodwin - Redshirt in 2006 while he adds weight. He is too skinny right now. I think that Mosley and Goodwin are competing for the same position and at this point I like Mosley's potential a little better. If Goodwin stays at WR, look for him to start seeing the field in 2009 as a junior. If he moves to corner, he may see the field sooner.
Marcel Reece - Washington does not have a weapon like Reece on the roster. He'll be an immediate two-year starter for the Huskies and will touch the ball 10-12 times per ball game if Lappano gets his way.
SPECIALIST: 1 - Danny Morovick is expected to step onto the field and handle all snapping duties from game one. The plan is for him to have that job for the next four years, and don't expect to see him anywhere else on the field.
DEFENSIVE LINE: 4
Cameron Elisara - Let this kid redshirt in 2006 while he makes sure that he will stay healthy and then allow him another year to grow into his body and get stronger while he toils behind a hopefully-healthy Jordan White-Frisbee and Erick Lobos in 2007. Then let him start contributing as a sophomore and eventually he'll be a force in the Pac-10 for his junior and senior campaigns. He is a legit defensive tackle.
Derek Kosub - Another legit defensive tackle, but perhaps a bit more raw than Elisara, Kosub will need a reshirt year in 2006 and then a couple of years to develop. But the good news is that if everyone stays healthy, Kosub will get ample time to learn. Hopefully by 2009 (junior season) he'll be ready to line up next to Elisara and be a run stuffer.
De'Shon Matthews - I'd love to see a redshirt year in 2006 and another year of development on the scout team in 2007 while he grows into an interior tackle with 25 more pounds on his 6-5 frame. I see Matthews, Kosub, and Elisara providing a nice 3-man rotation on the interior defensive line in 2009 and 2010.
Anthony Atkins - With Greyson Gunheim stepping up last year and Daniel Te'o Nesheim impressing, perhaps Atkins will get a year to redshirt and then step into his pass rushing role in 2007. If Caesar Rayford gains weight (a lot of it) and proves ready, Atkins may move to ILB. Atkins is a talented player that will add quality depth even if he doesn't start.
Donald Butler - Butler is a made-to-order inside linebacker. He will redshirt in 2006 and learn the MIK role as he toils behind Daniel Howell, and Scott White. I see him adding depth in 2007 and perhaps challenging for a starting role in 2008 as a sophomore.
Matt Houston - Houston is undersized but has a killer attitude. Redshirt in 2006, toil in the depth in 2007 and 2008 behind Tahj Bomar, Chris Stevens, and Darrion Jones. Look for him as a regular on the field by 2009 in his junior season.
Ashlee Palmer - Palmer is the type of athlete that might add immediate depth at safety along with Dashon Goldson and C.J. Wallace in 2006, taking a starting role in 2007. He is fast enough to be a nickel back right away if his coverage skills are solid. This kid was not brought in to redshirt.
Jason Wells - Wells is fast and his coach at Mt SAC believes that he's the real deal. I see a redshirt year in 2006 and then challenging for a strong safety spot in the Husky secondary in 2007 and 2008.
Jordan Murchison - It's hard to tell from his JC play what Murchison will bring early. Hopes are that he'll redshirt in 2006 and then become a solid corner for two seasons in 2007 and 2008 after Fountaine and Josh Okoebor graduate. However Murchison is fast and tall so if he has good coverage skills, playing time in 2006 might be a necessity.
Jake Merrill - Redshirt in 2006 for sure. He looks like he could bulk up into a nice outside linebacker and bring good speed to that position if he's given a couple of years. I'd love to see him line up at WLB in 2009 next to Butler at MIK and Houston at SAM.
DAWGMAN's PREDICTIONS FOR THE 2006 CLASS (including eventual position played):
6 will play in 2006: QB Jake Locker, FB Paul Homer, WR Marcel Reece, FS Ashlee Palmer, DS Danny Morovick, OT Brandon Jefferson (if he gets in).
5 will play by 2007: OT Sir Aaron Mason, WR Matt Mosley, DE Anthony Atkins, SS Jason Wells, CB Jordan Murchison.
7 will play by 2008: OT Cody Habben, C Matt Sedillo, CB D'Andre Goodwin, DT Cameron Elisara, LB Donald Butler, S Leilyon Myers, DT De'Shon Matthews.
4 will play by 2009: OT Ryan Tolar, LB Matt Houston, LB Jake Merrill, DT Derek Kosub.
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