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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

May 15, 2007 at 10:01 PM

Assessing UW’s recent pros

A post last week wrapping up all of the UW players who were drafted or have signed free agent contracts elicited an e-mail from a reader who said it seemed as if more Huskies were getting such opportunities this year.
The reader wondered if the numbers would bear that out.
Not necessarily.
Here’s a breakdown of UW players drafted or signed to free agent deals the last three seasons:
2007 — 7 (so far). Isaiah Stanback and Dashon Goldson drafted; Stanley Daniels, Sonny Shackelford, Marlon Wood, C.J. Wallace and Kenny James signed to free agent contracts. Punter Sean Douglas is also likely to sign later.
2006 — 6. Joe Toledo drafted. Rob Meadow, James Sims, Tui Alailefaleula, Evan Benjamin, Manase Hopoi signed to free agent contracts.
2005 — 5. Khalif Barnes and Derrick Johnson drafted. Zach Tuiasosopo, Charles Frederick, Tim Galloway signed to free agent contracts.
Obviously, there are more this year, but it’s not a real significant increase.
Also, UW had just 11 seniors in the 2004 season (which is the pro class of 2005) compared to 17 last season (not including the suddenly seniors) and 20 in 2005.
Of the players drafted or signed the last two years, only five are still in the NFL — Toledo (Miami), Johnson (Texans), Barnes (Jaguars), Alailefaleula (Jets) and Tuiasosopo (Eagles).
Not a huge number, to be sure, and a pretty good indicator of why UW’s record was as bad as it was in 2004 and 2005. People can talk all they want about the talent that was left behind by Rick Neuheisel, but I think those numbers speak pretty loudly.
Also worth noting is that the book is now closed in terms of the NFL Draft on the Class of 2002, which was the one Neuheisel touted as being his best at Washington.
In the end, just two of 21 players signed that year were drafted — Stanback and Goldson (who didn’t qualify immediately and was re-recruited to UW two years later by Keith Gilbertson out of junior college). And only two others signed free agent contracts — Daniels and James. Enough to make one wonder why Neuheisel still seems to have a reputation in some circles for having been a good recruiter during his time at UW.

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