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Washington Pre-Signing Day Mailbag

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The Huskies hosted their last round of official visits in preparation for Wednesday's signing day. We answer a few of your questions on the subject of recruiting as we race to the finish line.

Texas RB Chris Warren is one of the last big prizes left in the recruiting sweepstakes.
Texas RB Chris Warren is one of the last big prizes left in the recruiting sweepstakes.

Let's jump right into it:

D All Day asks:  If everybody who is currently committed signs and if the Dawgs land Chris Warren, what will their priorities be for the 2016 class?

Chris:  Good question, D.  To answer it, let's do a little math.

Let's presume for a moment that Chris Petersen takes a full 25 in this class in addition to the three players who are already enrolled (S Ezekiel Turner, QB Jake Browning and LB Kyler Manu) and the two players rumored to be grey shirting (LS AJ Carty and DE Myles Rice).  In this scenario, UW's 85 scholarships will be allocated to 61 players who are sophomores or younger.  That is to say that 72% of UW's allocated scholarships will be to underclassmen.

That, my friends, is a young team.

The good news in a ratio that is so dramatically steeped towards young players is that the cupboards look to remain pretty well stocked and balanced when you project out a few years.  This means that Petersen will go into the 2016 with no unusual shortages or "priorities" with his recruiting class other than to execute his steady-state strategy.

I think that if you asked the coaches, they'd like to make sure that they get a couple more safeties in the 2016 class given that there are three guys (Kevin King, Trevor Walker and Brandon Beaver) who are all going into their junior years.  They may also admit that they don't have the kicking game pieces that they want to have.  Beyond that, I expect their priorities will be what they should always be:  stocking the lines, getting a QB (Skinny Eason?  Matt Fink?), landing their annual RB and, because they now have the depth of numbers, rolling the dice on a few game-breaking types of talents a la Shaq Thompson who may be a little bit outside of their normal recruiting pipelines.

BC Dawg wonders:  Are we recruiting Snoop Dogg's son?

Chris:  Cordell Broadus, the son of rappher Snoop Dogg, is an immensely talented receiver out of Bishop Gorman High School.  Not only does he have the dimensions that you look for in a high school receiver - 6'2" 200 lbs, but he also has demonstrated production playing at the highest level with Bishop Gorman. He has 17 offers - all from major programs such as Florida State, Notre Dame, USC, LSU, Baylor, Nebraska and, yes, Washington.

I know that there has been some emotional debate in previous comment threads about whether or not we want to have Snoop associated with our program.  The truth of the matter, however, is that Broadus appears to be pretty lukewarm on Washington despite Chris Petersen's strong interest in attracting a player of his caliber.  With Marques Tuiasosopo leading his recruitment for USC, I'd have to figure that Broadus will eventually find his way there, thus making all of our internal debate moot.

DeliveryDawg wants to know:  What can you tell us about new Husky commit John Clark?

Chris: Clark is a classic Chris Petersen kind of OKG pickup.  He's a big, local kid from Marysville who will play on the defensive line as a walk-on at UW.  He's a big kid at 6'3" and 240 lbs who has surprising speed for his size.  He's raw, now doubt.  But his physical skills make him a very nice addition to this class.

Petersen has a track record of giving walk-ons a chance to earn scholarships.  Like all college programs, there tends to be a certain amount of churn among young players.  Having talented walk-ons who can help build out your depth and step into key roles as that attrition takes place is key to the refurbishment of any program.  Clark strikes me as the kind of player who has the passion and tenacity to emerge as an eventual scholarship earner in the same vein as Olympia's Drew Schultz.

CostaRicaDawg asks:  How did this weekend go with official visits?

Chris:  I have to admit that I don't work all that hard at trying to piece together tweets and rumors floating around the typical mills.  Kirk will be doing a visit recap later today, so I won't steal his thunder (not that I could if I tried).  It would appear that all of the guys who we had scheduled to make their official visits did make those visits, including Texas RB Chris Warren.  Here is a tweet from Chris Warren's mother with a couple of photos:

From everything that I gather, Petersen and his staff do a great job managing the official visit experience both from a player perspective and from a parent's perspective.  Henry Roberts reaffirmed  his commitment, John Clark committed as a walk-on and the in-home with Chris Petersen is now set up as a possible "close the deal" kind of moment.  I'm not sure we could have asked for anything more.

Bake15 asks:  As it stands now (before Warren decision) how does this class stack up against Sark's best classes?

Chris:  Although we are not reeling in any jaw-dropping national elite level talents like Shaq Thompson or Demore'ea Stringfellow in this class, I can't find any reason that this particular class doesn't stack up well against the best class that Sark ever put together which, in my mind, was the 2013 class that had a composite ranking of 18th in the nation.

The 2015 class that Petersen is assembling currently ranks 23rd in the nation but only 5th in the PAC per 247 Sports' composite rating.  Despite the somewhat pedestrian rating, there are two important elements that stand out in this class relative to Sark's best efforts.  The first is the domination of the Huskies in-state.  Not only have they gotten commitments from just about everybody they wanted - guys like Myles Gaskin, Austin Joyner and Henry Roberts - but they've reconstructed the old pipelines that Sark had left in tatters.  Not only is this key for future recruiting, but it also blocks some of our Pac12 North rivals from marching into key programs like Bellevue and Skyline and just taking whomever they want.

The second aspect that is really important with this class is the restocking of depth in key areas of shortage - in particular on the offensive and defensive lines.  Counting Clark, UW has commitments from 11 guys who will probably play along the line of scrimmage as Dawgs.  Rebuilding that depth and establishing balance on the roster was something that Sark was never quite able to do and something that Petersen has accomplished in just two recruiting cycles.