Washington secured the running back position in the 2021 recruiting class with the formal commitment of Caleb Berry. Berry comes to Montlake from Lufkin, Texas, a small town about halfway between Houston and Dallas (the same school that produced Dez Bryant and three other current NFL players). Berry chose UW from an eclectic mix of scholarship offers, including Texas Tech, Arkansas, and most of the Mountain West. 247 rates Berry as a three-star prospect and the 43rd best running back in the 2021 recruiting class.
Berry’s greatest strength is his combination of size and speed. At 6’2” and 210 lbs., he already has ample size to not only play at the Power 5 level, but to excel as a bruising back. Berry also has impressive speed for his frame as shown by his success in the 100m and 200m events in track. As with most incoming freshmen, Berry will have to work on his blocking and pass catching. If there’s one additional area for improvement for Berry, it is probably his elusiveness. His sheer strength allowed him to run through defenders in high school, but he will have to show more shiftiness to pile up yardage at the next level.
This season has shown us that John Donovan’s offense likes to lean heavily on the power running game, so Berry will be an asset in that area. Kamari Pleasant and Sean McGrew both graduate (though it remains to be seen whether they will return for another year since this didn’t count against their eligibility). Without Pleasant, Berry and Richard Newton would be the biggest, most powerful backs on the depth chart. Cameron Davis, Sam Adams II, and fellow Texan Jay’veon Sunday will likely sit above him on the depth chart to begin.
In addition to Sunday, Berry joins recent Huskies out of the Lone Star State Victor Curne, Cooper McDonald, and Levi Onwuzurike.