Texas defensive lineman Anthony James is officially a Dawg!
One of DeBoer and staff’s most impressive recruiting wins, James committed to Washington during the June cavalcade of commitments and quickly turned into one of the most vocal cheerleaders for this class and program.
A borderline three/four star recruit per recruiting platforms, his commitment signalled optimism that the new Washington staff could win some difficult battles for recruits for whom UW didn’t have any natural advantages; from Wylie, Texas, James was outside of both DeBoer and the Huskies’ usual recruiting footprint while being highly-regarded enough to be pursued by other programs that had a geographic and conference advantage, particularly the in-state, mega-loaded Texas A&M. He also had offers from 14 other SEC, B1G, and Big 12 schools, as well as from closer ACC and Pac-12 programs like ASU, Utah, Miami, and Florida State.
James was a versatile lineman in high school, playing anywhere from nose tackle to three technique or even out wider at five. He won’t be a capital I interior player in college, but his length, frame (6’4”-5”ish depending on who you ask and variously reported at between 248 to 266 lbs), and intelligence means he could probably be deployed in many different spots along the line at the next level. Along with being powerful and agile, he’s smart at diagnosing plays and has the quickness to successfully follow through with attacking those diagnoses.
One thing he could improve on is taking a better angle to the quarterback once he does get in the backfield, especially at the next level where they’ll be faster and trickier to get a hand on. However, he showed good discipline on his gaps in high school, which makes me think he’ll improve those backfield angles since those too are mostly a matter of discipline.
Overall, a good addition to one of the most crucial position groups.
Do good things, don’t do bad things, and bow down to Washington.