Washington Football team senior safety JoJo McIntosh prepares for his final NCAA season, one more year to deliver punishment to the opposing offense
When the Washington Football team sends out their defense this season, it’s not about forcing the opposing team offense to punt the ball back. After all, when safety JoJo McIntosh takes the field, he is not thinking about stopping the offense. He starts each play by challenging the offense to stop him. And the subtle difference shows up huge on the field.
The Washington defense views each snap as an opportunity to score, from the defense. While that sounds like a statistical impossibility, it’s a curious perspective. From their vantage point, they do not play on their heels trying to thwart the next offensive play. They are the aggressors, and as such are proactively trying to punish the ball carrier, force a turnover, and take it in for a touchdown.
Each defense takes on the personality of their defensive coordinator. Until this season, the defensive coordinator genius for Washington has been Pete Kwiatkoski. This season, defensive backs coach Jimmy Lake will assume the reigns of the defense as the co-defensive coordinator for the team. Don’t look for much to change. After all, the same coaches with many of the same players.
One significant common denominator for the Washington Football success is a stymieing defensive play. And JoJo McIntosh certainly subscribes to that style of play. He bludgeons receivers and ball carriers.
McIntosh has earned his reputation as heavy hitter. He entered the 2017 season as the ESPN most versatile player for the team. He paired up with safety Taylor Rapp, who earned the 2016 Pac-12 Freshman Defensive Player of the Year award. That duo sustained a formidable backbone for the team throughout the season
While injuries tampered the defense’s ability to win several critical games, you can bet the team flourished from the intensity delivered by McIntosh. It was the steady play of the junior safety which kept the team from spiralling downward last season.
Now, healthy and fully prepared for another season, JoJo McIntosh can punctuate his Washington Huskies career with one more season of punishing tackles. But his football career, as bright as any, is overshadowed by the true quality of this young man.
JoJo McIntosh possesses a strong positive character. In fact, his is the type of mental toughness which commands respect on the field, but which delivers incredible compassion and insight off the field.
2018 will be the last season of NCAA eligibility for safety JoJo McIntosh. After this year, he will likely be invited to the 2019 NFL Combine and hear his name called during the 2019 NFL Draft. Some NFL team will find they not only have selected an intimidating warrior on the football field, but a true positive lockerroom presence.
The 2018 football season is a huge challenge for Washington. Thankfully, the team has plenty of senior leadership to keep everything in perspective. As a matter of fact, it’s that leadership which has many analysts projecting Washington to reclaim the Pac-12 title. It won’t come easily though. It will take a Herculean effort on offense, defense, and special teams.
Thankfully, JoJo McIntosh specializes in that level of effort.