Headlining a much longer list of players who decided not to enter the draft is Zion Tupuola-Fetui. The redshirt sophomore burst onto the scene in 2020, recording seven sacks in four games, which earned him Third-Team All-America honors from the Associated Press. With Laiatu Latu and Sav’ell Smalls returning on the edge in 2021, the Huskies could have one of the country’s best pass-rush groups.
Cade Otton could be the frontrunner for the Mackey Award in 2021. The tight end earned first-team All Pac-12 honors in 2020, and has a chance to become an All-American in 2021. After tying his career-high with three touchdowns, and on a pace to smash all his highs in catches and yards, Otton will be part of a lethal passing attack next season. And don’t forget that he’s one of the team’s best-run blockers.
Jaxson Kirkland and Luke Wattenberg announced they’ll also be returning to Montlake, and that means the Huskies will be returning all five starters along the offensive line in 2021. That line should form a menacing front for running back Sean McGrew, who also shared his intentions to return to the team. Wattenberg and McGrew will both be taking advantage of the extra year of eligibility offered by the NCAA to all student-athletes.