Washington football’s pass rush is going to be a force to be reckoned with in 2020, and Latu is going to be a huge piece of the puzzle
There are few people on the planet that move like Washington football’s Laiatu Latu. There are even fewer that move like him at 6’4, 266 pounds. He burst onto the scene as a freshman, playing in 12 of the Huskies’ 13 games. He recorded 15 total tackles and half a sack during his first campaign. While his numbers weren’t exactly eye-popping when you compare them to some other freshmen, like Oregon’s Kayvon Thibodeaux, his potential is just as high. There’s a reason Chris Petersen decided to burn his redshirt.
One thing that sets Latu apart from the competition is his versatility. His high school film shows off his athleticism at tight end, outside linebacker, and even at middle linebacker. He possesses tons of natural power, and insane short-area quickness that allows him to beat any tackle to the outside.
Latu is an incredibly exciting talent and should see his role expanded in a major way in 2020. The defensive tackles are one of the best groups in the country, and should free up a lot of opportunities for him to see one on one opportunities with tackles. After displaying an advanced set of pass rush moves in high school and as a freshman, Latu should see himself on the two-deep depth chart to start the year. It wouldn’t be a shock if he made his way into the starting lineup by the end of the season.
While the offense figures out its identity at quarterback, the defense is going to be the driving force behind the team’s success. Washington’s secondary is going to be arguably the nation’s best and is going to give the pass rush tons of time to hit home. Whether Pete Kwiatkowski decides to rush three, four, or blitz, the talent up front should prove to be the best pass rush group the Huskies have ever had. Joe Tryon is an All-American, but he can’t do it all himself on the edge, and Latu is going to be a huge part of the front four’s success.