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Roundtable: The Big Recruiting Week

What constitutes a successful week for the new coaching staff as they host ~20 prospects on campus?

NCAA Football: California at Washington Stephen Brashear-USA TODAY Sports

As of right now Washington is scheduled to have 19 official visitors over the next week including 17 who are currently uncommitted. Given that under Petersen/Lake the goal was to make the last December weekend before signing day the main visit weekend, this is almost certainly the biggest summer recruiting week in a long long time. If we end up looking back a month from now when the next dead period ends, what would you need to see to have considered this week a success? Is there a number of commitments you think Washington needs to get over the next month, a position that needs to be represented, or a specific recruit that is an absolute priority for you?


Aaron Sieverkropp: Interesting question. With how many visitors and the importance of some of the visitors I would expect that UW should have half of its class filled by the end of July.

As far as what I would like to see to consider it a success I would say they need to add a QB, either Johnson or Kienholz, and they need to keep both Banuelos and Hatchett home. Based on the emphasis the coaching staff has put on the month of June we also need to land some of our higher rated recruits we are bringing in (CB Crawford and OT Jackett as examples).

I don’t expect them to land everyone but if they bring in 14+ guys this weekend and land 1 that would be a disappointment (I think a 30% hit rate feels about right).

The #1 recruit they have to land this week IMO is Elimneous Davis since almost every other defensive tackle is off the board. I already talked about a QB, which means they have to hit on Kienholz or Johnson

Max Vrooman: I agree that QB and DT are the 2 most important and that Davis and Kienholz are the 2 likeliest candidates at each spot which means they are extra important. The coaching staff have offered 13 defensive linemen who are at least 260 pounds so far in this class. 5 of them are already committed including 3 to USC/Oregon. Davis is the only one taking an official visit and subsequently seems like the best bet even if he’s from Minnesota.

All the buzz seems to be pointing towards Avery Johnson staying home at Kansas State which leaves Keinholz as the last one standing of the 5 QBs that UW seemingly pursued with true intent. Given that UW didn’t land someone like Josh Wood in the 2022 class it would not be a good look for DeBoer to be an offensive innovator and completely whiff on all his QB targets and forced to start anew in the fall. Not a death knell but not a good omen.

I think the coaching staff would be fine from an aesthetics standpoint if only one of Banuelos/Hatchett comes provided we only take one guard in the class given they appear to be fairly similar players/talents. It would also be nice to end up with a 4-star target from this group such as Maliki Crawford or Anthony James.

Overall if this class ends up looking like a success they need to bring in at least 7 of the official visitors this weekend who aren’t already committed. If we look back at the end of July and UW has gotten commitments from a grouping similar to this then I’d feel good about where we’re at: QB Kienholz, WR Lyons, TE Bowers or Sadiq, OL Banuelos or Hatchett, OL Bakalenko or Jackett, DL Davis, LB Johnson or Whitney, CB Crawford or Bryant.


* In between these responses Banuelos just eliminated UW from contention and canceled his official visit so things are off to a great start.

**And then Bakalenko also canceled his visit. More great news...

Collin O’Meara: Clearly not an OKG (sarcasm font)

Naturally, DeBoer’s message of ”would you rather make 6 figures in college, or 8 figures in the Pros” isn’t gonnna resonate with everyone. (I have no proof DeBoer has said or even thinks this)

Andrew Berg: Obviously, the Banuelos and Bakalenko news is very bad, but even from the discussion earlier in the week, it isn’t doom for the entire recruiting class, and I’m hopeful that we’ll start to hear much better news coming out of our big visit weekend.

Luckily, both players were at positions where we had some depth or options in our recruiting profile. If we end up with Hatchett at iOL and Jackett at OT, that’s a pretty good pair of offensive linemen to build around. We might still want another developmental prospect, but if we are still able to nail one interior and one exterior lineman, this class can still be part of a very good O-line going forward.

I had two overall thoughts going into this weekend at the week and they haven’t changed much. First, I am hopeful that this visit weekend will help us get our class more than 50% full by the end of the summer. If we can get up to 10-12 verbal commitments by the start of fall camp, we should be able to close strong.

Second, I want this weekend to help us lock in a QB. As Aaron and Max have clearly said previously, we need a building-block QB that DeBoer and the rest of the staff like to build on down the road. If that’s Kleinholz, I’ll trust their judgment and see what they can do with him. What I don’t want is for them to whiff on every QB they like and take a compromise option with little chance to succeed.

The only thing that has changed through the week is that there is now more pressure and less margin for error on the OL recruiting. Instead of saying, “we need to get two guys from this list if 4+ guys,” we now have very specific targets and need to close on them. Add that as requirement number three for this weekend to be a success.

Coach B: I think I’m in the same boat as Andrew. We need to secure a QB and linemen on both sides of the ball. We have options at all 3 positions already on the roster in the near term, but they’re definitely positions that need to be restocked every year. Linemen set the floor of a team in many cases so it’s imperative that we can continue to add quality depth.

Davis is a priority at DT, and James and Wilson are still in play to varying degrees. That’s a solid hypothetical DL class. OL seems tighter now with Banuelos out of the picture, but there are still a few options out there like Hatchett.

Andrew: Yes, agreed on Davis. I didn’t specifically mention him here, but we have discussed him previously and I desperately want the guy from my mom’s HS to come play for us. I’d be happy to meet with him to discuss the Fargo-Moorhead -> UW pipeline. My friends Jordan and Scott, me, and Elinneus Davis??

Coach B: Overall I think we need to lock in half of our class by the end of the summer and specifically half of our line class and a QB.

On the QB front, obviously Johnson and Kienholz are at the top of the board but we should also keep hunting for high upside alternative options who we could stash on the roster as developmental depth guys. One guy I like a lot with a PWO offer is Camdyn Stiegeler from Oregon City. Good looking talent that is on the cusp of being a scholarship guy. I could see him getting an offer in the fall if we strike out with our current options.

Andrew: Counterpoint- As a UW blogger, I don’t want to spend the next five years double checking the vowels in “Camdyn Stiegeler.”

Max: Ah yes, you mean instead of trying to correctly spell Kienholz. (we managed to put kei instead of kie just about every time and I edited before publishing).