As with just about everything around National Signing Day (which is tomorrow, by the way), I will start this off with a little bit of a disclaimer. In making my personal predictions as to where various recruits considering Washington will decide to go, I am, of course, considering mostly rumors and opinions. Some of the opinions are my own, but all of the rumors belong to recruiting analysts at Scout, Rivals, etc.
I am a student at the University of Washington, so I do not contact recruits. So when I say that it is a consensus that a guy is going one place over another, I’m not saying it’s impossible for that recruit to go somewhere else, I’m saying that either a huge majority of recruiting analysts have picked him to go somewhere, or that there is some great logic to him picking a certain school based on location, personality, style of play, etc. Or both.
Recruiting analysts can be wrong, and often are. Say a dozen recruiting guys are absolutely sure that a player is going to pick Ohio State because they are in contact with that recruit and his family, have developed a relationship with them, and all of them are literally telling the analysts that it will be Ohio State. Those analysts are going to feel pretty confident trumpeting to the world that it’s Ohio State. And they wouldn’t be acting dishonestly, even if the kid changes his mind at the last second and goes to Florida.
Of course, we can talk all the way until the next National Signing Day about whether or not recruiting coverage represents responsible journalism, or if the whole process is fundamentally flawed. I think it is. But right now, that’s what National Signing Day is about. Rumors, guesses, hearsay. But it’s exciting and it’s not all that harmful as long as everyone realizes that losing a recruit to another school is not the end of the world.
So I’m not saying my picks are 100% for sure. They aren’t. Some of them I’m more confident in than others, but in almost no case would I be shocked if I were wrong. I’m also not trying to say that your opinion on these decisions is less valid than mine. As I said, I don’t talk to these recruits, so I don’t have crazy inside information unless it is being passed on to me by someone who does have contact with recruits. I probably can make a more informed prediction than the average fan because I spend so much time following the recruiting cycle simply because I run this site, but I’m sure some of you reading this are incredibly knowledgeable, and I’m sure some of you will disagree with me and have great reasons why.
So please, comment below or hit me up on twitter @HuskyHaul and we can discuss. As long as you’re respectful and reasonable, I don’t mind if you think I’m wrong, and I would love to hear what you have to say. So, now, after that long disclaimer, here are my predictions.
Jack is a four-star outside linebacker from Bellevue High School that has been committed to UCLA since June. While the Bellevue status makes him a local kid as far as UW is concerned, he is from Georgia originally, and doesn’t have a ton of ties to the area. Still, that hasn’t stopped him from being very involved with Husky football. He has visited the campus several times, was on the sidelines for several practices, and for much of the last six months seemed to treat his UCLA verbal as very soft.
Given that, I have long assumed he was likely to switch to UW at some point, and there were some signs of that. However, in the last week it has been reported that he has firmed up his commitment to UCLA, and though Washington appears to still be a possibility, I think it is likely he does stick with his original decision.
A prototypical left tackle prospect from Saint John Bosco, Falah would be an extremely valuable addition to a class that is very light on offensive linemen. He needs to add some weight, as he’s only around 270 right now, but if he can, he could contribute as early as his freshman season. He is verbally committed to USC, and has been since July, but the verbal is soft, and the only other school in consideration is Washington.
It has long been said that Falah loves Washington, and that perhaps it is even his preferred destination, but that his parents want him to stick with the Trojans. Given that, a lot of attention was focused on whether or not he would take a visit with his parents last weekend, giving him a chance to sell the school and the program to them. Well, he didn’t visit, but he is still choosing tomorrow between the two.
For me, this is a very tough one to predict. Falah himself has seemed very unsure. On twitter, he often posts pictures of UW gear, retweets Washington fans, often as much or more than he tweets about USC. He seems like he would be very happy as a Husky. Analysts seem to have reached a consensus that he will stick with the Trojans, but UW commits like Damore’ea Stringfellow are still recruiting him heavily as of this morning. Something else to consider: USC has been struggling to hold on to commits, while UW has built a unique class that is oddly tight-knit. There seems to be the feeling that they’re building something together, and I think Falah would like to be a part of that.
If his heart is really in Seattle, I think it is a distinct possibility that he flips, but that also assumes that it is just his parents that like USC, that he doesn’t want to go there. I think he does, and that he would be happy at both schools, so I think USC is the most likely outcome, though it is a tough pick.
As I was typing this article, a report came out that Vanderdoes has trimmed his list down to UCLA, USC, and Alabama, eliminating UW and Notre Dame. Now, there has been some questioning of that, so it’s likely that neither UW nor Notre Dame is fully eliminated, but I think that if UW were really a frontrunner, there wouldn’t be a debate as to whether or not they are eliminated altogether from the list. He looked likely to head to UCLA before, and I think this news just sort of firms up the idea that Washington isn’t a likely choice. The Bruins should watch out for Bama though, as Vanderdoes just visited last weekend and recently added them to his list.
Hall is the only guy included in this post that is currently verbally committed to Washington. It’s always possible that one of the other guys decides to flip last second, but for the most part, like I talked about for Falah, these kids are pretty close to one another and seem to have their minds made up. Except for Hall.
The 6’6″ 240-pound defensive end from Lancaster, Texas originally committed to Texas early in the year before flipping to the Huskies as part of the eight-man commitment fest on June 29th, 2012. In recent months he has been pursued, and has shown interest in, both TCU and Texas A&M. It was also perceived as a bit of a blow to Washington’s efforts to hold onto him when he did not visit last weekend.
While it’s a very distinct possibility that he decides to stay close to home, I personally think that Sark and Co. will hold on to Hall. He is currently committed to Washington, so he clearly enjoyed the school to begin with, and with multiple Texas schools trying to get in on Hall down the stretch, I think it’s likely they have trouble standing out from one another in such a way that Hall flips. Still, this is one that will come down to the wire and A&M is the most likely candidate to flip him.
Tyree and Tyrell Robinson
A really intriguing situation with these two. Both are currently committed to Oregon, but have opened things up in the wake of Chip Kelly’s departure and are really only considering Washington as an alternative. There have been some rumors that they may split up, so I considered not bundling them, but the vast majority of recruiting types seem to disagree, saying they are still almost certainly going to come as a pair to either Oregon or Washington.
Something else intriguing? Both of them are at least three-star basketball prospects, and regardless of where they go, they will play basketball as well, and I’m not talking the way ASJ played as a fringe, walk-on type basketball player with great football talent. If these two decided they never wanted to see a football again, they’d still likely have offers from several Pac-12 schools.
It sounds as if Tyree is more of an Oregon lean, while Tyrell likes Washington and is trying to convince his twin brother. I have a tough time predicting this one, but it does look to be Washington’s best shot at a big-time addition on Signing Day. Just given the fact that they are probably far more familiar with Sark than they are with Oregon’s new coach, Mark Helfrich, and that they most recently visited Washington, I will go ahead and call the last-second flip.