Happy Wednesday Husky fans. The Huskies had a pretty good Wednesday (the first day of the early signing period) when 15 recruits signed their letters of intent this morning. There are still a couple of prospects on the board who haven’t signed their NLI’s yet, and I expect UW will probably land both (one is Dominic Kirks- a defensive lineman who is currently committed to UW and the other is Aaron Butler a 4 star wide receiver).
The current class is rated as the 30th class in the country by 247sports (current 4 star defensive line commit Dominic Kirks hasn’t signed his NLI yet but is still factored into the rankings). The class is made up of 4-4 star recruits according to 247sports, and 5- 4 star composite commits (an average of all recruiting rankings). The class carries an average rating of 88.82 (close to a high 4 star which is good enough for the 26th best class in the country and 7th overall in the B1G). I really like this class and there are some players that stand out when you watch their film. Here is a breakdown of each position group and who was brought in:
The 2024 class is very heavy on the defensive line/edge with 4 of the signees coming in for those positions. The headliner is probably Noah Carter, who 247sports has rated as a top 100 prospect in the country, and is an athletic freak out on the edge (the Huskies beat out Texas and Louisville for his commitment). The staff is also bringing in Ratumana Bulabalavu who recently was upgraded to a 4 star defensive lineman by 247sports. Bulabalavu is an intriguing prospect who has amassed a ton of sacks (19 this this year) from the edge position but the staff sees to think he will grow into an interior defensive lineman. Also joining the class were 3 star edge player Keona Wilhite, who is just scratching the surface of how good he can be, and 3 star defensive tackle Omar Khan, who wrestled in high school in Texas. With the loss of a bunch of key players along the line this offseason (ZTF, Tuli, Trice, and Ale) a couple of true freshman will likely need to play next year along the line.
On the back end of the defensive the Huskies brought in an elite athlete in 4 star composite safety Peyton Waters (who projects to play free safety or at Husky) as well as hard hitting 3 star Joshua Lair (who projects as a boundary safety), and 4 star composite Paul Mencke Jr (who just flipped from Duke today, and projects to play as more of a rover safety- similar to the way the staff lines up and uses Asa Turner). Elias Johnson, a 3 star cornerback who is a lengthy and rangy cornerback should be able to redshirt and some size to his frame before he needs to see the field. Between the trio of Mencke, Lair and Waters the Huskies safety room should be set for a few years going forward.
At linebacker the Huskies added some speed in 3 star linebacker Khmori House (who comes from powerhouse HS St John Bosco). House joins a linebacker corps which includes Deven Bryant, who played at Bosco as well last year. House is a very underrated prospect who has speed to run sideline to sideline.
On offense the Huskies added a good QB prospect in Dermaricus Davis. Davis, who is rated as a 4 star QB by 247sports, is a dual threat QB that fits into the mold of what the Husky staff are looking for (taller QB’s, with good arms and are mobile). Davis wont need to play right away, but once he adds another 15-20 pounds to his frame he could be a real weapon for the Dawgs.
The offense also added some great receiving weapons at wide receiver. Both wideouts that have signed (Jason Robinson and Justice Williams) are rated as 3 star wideouts by most recruiting services and both should have success in UW’s offense. Robinson will be more of a slot wideout (think Doug Baldwin), whereas Williams figures to play more outside and use his 6’4” length to his advantage.
Along the offensive line the Huskies add a “Troy Fautanu” type player in Paki Finau, who is rated as a 4 star offensive lineman that can play inside or outside once he comes to Montlake). They also added a road grading offensive tackle in Davit Boyajyan (who was somewhat of a late riser in recruiting circles but he has the size to be a very good right tackle down the road).
The last HS prospect to put pen to paper today was Decker DeGraaf, a 3 star tight end, who should be an excellent all around TE in the Husky offense (after a likely redshirt year). DeGraaf is an excellent pass catching tight end who also plays defensive end (which is a good sign about his ability to run block down the road).
Today the Husky staff also announced some transfer portal additions who should come in and immediately help the program next season. Will Rogers, who played at Mississippi State last year, looks like he will take over the offense next year for the Dawgs. Joining Rogers from the portal are BJ Green (a defensive end from ASU who wasn’t announced today but did commit last week), Drew Azzopardi (an offensive tackle from SDSU), Sebastian Valdez (a defensive tackle from Montana State), and Ethan Barr (a linebacker from Vanderbilt).
As I mentioned above the Huskies could still add a couple more HS prospects (before the early signing period closes on Friday). I would keep an eye on 4 star wide receiver Aaron Butler from Calabasas HS, CA who is looking heavily at UW and Arizona. The Huskies also have a verbal commitment from Dominic Kirks a 4 star defensive end out of Riverside HS, OH. Adding both players would take the class up to 7th in the B1G overall rankings or 22nd overall in the country.
That is all for now and as always follow me @asieverkropp.