Jimmy Lake is the right man for the Washington football job, especially on the recruiting trail, and he’s going to prove it
After the shocking news that Washington football head coach Chris Petersen will be stepping down following the team’s bowl game, and defensive coordinator Jimmy Lake would be taking over the position, one of the first thoughts on some fan’s minds (understandably so) is “what’s going to happen with the recruiting?”
Lake holds a great deal of respect among current and former players, parents, coaches, and just about anyone you can think of when it comes to college football.
The 2020 class
Don’t expect many, if any, players from the 2020 class to decommit. The fact that Chris Petersen is staying with the program is a big key, but it looks like most of the assistant coaches will be staying with the team as well. We can also point to the fact that Lake has been consistently the best recruiter on the staff, bringing in highly-rated recruits, and turning them into NFL talent (see Sidney Jones, Budda Baker, Kevin King, Taylor Rapp, Jordan Miller, and even more in the works)
The top talent in this class is crucial to the Huskies next season, and while some of them have been vocal on Twitter about Petersen leaving, none of them seemed to indicate that they’re wavering in their decisions (yet, at least). Even if they do, expect Lake to pull out all the stops to make sure he can secure their commitment, much like he did with Asa Turner at this time last year.
The all-important 2021 class is looming, and Lake clearly knows how to get the job done on the recruiting trail, so it’ll be a pretty big test for him right off the bat, but he’s definitely up to the task. He’s proven time and again that he can get the job done, so with all the top talent being right in his backyard should be a great help.
Under Lake, the OKG system will also probably be eliminated, which is a great benefit for the program. OKG has also been incredibly selective over the years, and has turned away some big-time talent like Gee Scott Jr., who wasn’t offered until his senior year of high school. Or top 100 in-state athlete Julien Simon, who didn’t get offered until the summer before his junior year. You can also point to Scott’s teammate at Eastside Catholic (Wash.), four-star tight end D.J. Rogers, who still hasn’t received an offer. He’s an experienced closer, and with other elite recruiters on staff like Ikaika Malloe, Scott Huff, and Junior Adams, they should be able to get the job done with every demographic, at every position.
Now, this isn’t saying that things are going to be leaps and bounds better because Lake is taking over, but you shouldn’t expect a drop-off on the recruiting front, and with all the talent within the Huskies’ reach over the next few years, expect Lake to take care of business on the recruiting trail.