Deontae Cooper is enrolled at the UW and currently participating in winter conditioning drills which started yesterday. Cooper just may end up being the top performing RB recruit in the West this season after the dust all settles. There were some kids ranked slightly higher but his strong senior season opened up some eyes even if it was against less than elite competition.
Chris Polk will likely sit out spring drills to rest a shoulder that is going to be surgically prepared for the second time. This will give Cooper the opportunity to flash his talent and make a move for playing time in 2010. MLB Victor Burnett and TB Jessie Callier are expected to enroll in March and be here for spring drills.
If you have been anticipating some attrition for the football program the first week of classes is one to keep an eye on. Most feel the Huskies will lose around eight players between now and fall to make room for the oversized recruiting class coming in.
The first to announce he is leaving is backup linebacker Kurt Mangum who said that he is departing UW to finish his college career at Howard University in Washington DC. Mangum spent two full years at Washington after arriving in the spring of 2008.
Kurt played under three different DC's at Washington and was battling a knee injury this past season that he played with even though it slowed him down. He didn't see a lot of time with the new regime so he felt it was best to move on to a school where we could concentrate on his pre-law studies.
A reader asked me the other day why Washington was loading up on LB's like they were in a panic and this is one example of the reason why. Washington will definitely take one more MLB/SLB type to round out the class. The preference would be for Hayes Pullard but chances are they end up with Garrett Gilliliand who is waiting to see if there is room.
The Huskies have two commits playing in the US Army All American Bowl this weekend. Sione Potoae form Lakes HS has been impressive so far in drills this week. There is no hype about this kid. He is definitely one of the best DL in the country. Keanon Lowe from Jesuit in Portland who was recruited as a WR will line up as a DB in this game. LB VJ Fehoko, DE Josh Shirley, and DT Rick Heimuli who Washington is also recruiting will also be playing in the game.
For all you VJ Fehoko lovers out there he isn't getting high marks in USAAB practices so far. Seems like the elite players are blowing him up and eating him for lunch. Another interesting comment I read from Brandon Huffman of Scout is that he looks to be around 5'10. Just saying maybe there was a reason UW decided to not jump all over him after his visit.
Future UW QB Nick Montana played in last weeks Under Armour game and ESPN's Gerry Hamilton interviewed Sam Whyche who was the coach on what he thinks about the younger Montana.
"Well, he's a gamer. He plays better than he practices. He practiced well this week, but played even better. You saw the judgment come out in the game," Wyche said. "Other than the last pass where he got loosey-goosey, he played well. He showed awfully good poise under pressure today."
Four future Huskies played in something called the Offense-Defense Bowl last week. LB Darius Waters WR Jamaal Kearse, RB Chris Young of and OL Erik Kohler were the Husky participants. Not a lot of news came out from the game but all the players seemed to show well according to limited reports I have read.
Washington still has around a dozen candidates left on the board to fill up to four spots on the roster. Washington will host visitors on the weekends of the 15th and the 22nd. Recruiting will be fast and furious between the 15th and the 30th when things close down again in anticipation of signing day.
The decision on EJ Savannah's sixth year should come sooner than later according to insiders. EJ missed his entire junior season due to a broken arm and problems with ex Husky coach Tyrone Willingham. Most who know EJ will tell you the kid is no angel but he has cleaned up his act quite a bit since the problems he had early in his career at Washington.
The coaches will tell you that he is focused on school and football right now. The NCAA has been generous of late in allowing the additional sixth year. Washington center Juan Garcia was the last recipient. I am not sure if EJ will get it or not but the coaches are hopeful and I honestly think the kid deserves it.
The consensus opinion coming out of Los Angeles is that USC threw this years basketball team under the bus to show the NCAA they were serious about institutional control. The sanctions were made with advice from both the Pac 10 and the NCAA. Final word will come from the NCAA later this year who may decide to levy additional penalties.
Many look at this as a last ditch effort to deflect punishment away from the football teamsince everyone knew the basketball program was going to get hit hard anyway. LA writers are going as far to say that the NCAA doesn't want to ruin the cash cow that is the USC Trojan football program even though they are still investigating them for problems during the Reggie Bush years. I think it might just be wishful thinking on the writers part that the NCAA does not want to penalize USC. They had no problem doing it to schools such as Alabama and uburn who are just as distinguished on the football field.
Washington has dropped in the men's college basketball rankings after a loss to Oregon on Saturday. The Huskies fell from No. 17 to No. 24 in The Associated Press rankings released this morning. In the ESPN/USA Today rankings, the Huskies dropped from No. 16 to No. 22.