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January 26, 2011 at 8:15 AM

Reviewing UW’s success getting Seattle Times’ blue chippers

As noted last night, the commitment of Bishop Sankey gives the Huskies a clean sweep of the Seattle Times’ Blue Chip players — the highest ranking of high school recruits in the state.

It’s the first time that has happened since at least 1997 (as far back as I can find complete lists at the moment). The Blue Chippers are selected “from observations and interviews with coaches at various levels. Sportswriters from around the state are consulted and the rankings by Rivals.com and Scout.com recruiting websites weighed. Players are evaluated on their college potential.
Blue count.”

Here’s a look at previous Blue Chip players and how many committed to UW:

2011 — 5 (Kasen Williams, Austin Seferian-Jenkins, Tani Tupou, Bishop Sankey, Danny Shelton). UW’s take: All five.

2010 — 4 (Jake Heaps, Colin Porter, Sione Potoa’e, Chris Young). UW’s take: 3. Huskies signed Porter, Potoa’e and Young, though still waiting on Young to arrive).

2009 — 3 (Gino Simone, Deandre Coleman, Kirby Moore). UW’s take: Zero. In the year when the Huskies went 0-12 they missed out on the state’s top three recruits.

2008 — 6 (Kavario Middleton, Everrette Thompson, David DeCastro, Alameda Ta’amu, Jermaine Kearse, Nick Cody). UW’s take: 4. In Tyrone Willingham’s last full class, he got four of the six, missing out on DeCastro — which stings a little more every year — and Cody, who went to Oregon.

2007 — 4 (Kellen Kiilsgaard, Kevin Freitag, Marshall Lobbestael, Nate Williams). UW’s take: 1. Huskies got only Williams, though this was kind of a starstruck group as the football careers of Freitag (WSU) and Kiilsgaard (Stanford) ended quickly.

2006 — 4 (Jake Locker, Stephen Schilling, Taylor Mays, Andy Mattingly). UW’s take: 1. Huskies got only Locker of a foursome that all had good to great college careers.

2005 — 6 (Jonathan Stewart, Leon Jackson, Anthony Felder, Kenny Alfred, J.R. Hasty, E.J. Savannah). UW’s take: 2. In the year when the Huskies transitioned from Keith Gilbertson to Willingham, the Huskies needed a late push to get the Bellevue duo of Hasty and Savannah to avoid being shut out.

2004 — 8 (Keauntea Bankhead, Aaron Klovas, Andy Roof, Walter Winter, Matt Tuiasosopo, Johnie Kirton, Chancellor Young, Ryan Burks). UW’s take: Huskies got four of the eight in Bankhead, Tuiasosopo, Kirton and Winter, in the only full recruiting class for Gilbertson. But neither Bankhead nor Tuiasosopo ever enrolled and the class failed to live up to expectations. Young signed with Duke and later transferred to UW.

2003 — 5 (Craig Chambers, Johnny DuRocher, Tahj Bomar, Derrick Bradley, Jordan Carey). UW’s take: 3. In Rick Neuheisel’s last full class with the Huskies, UW signed Chambers, Bomar and Bradley, the latter of whom never played due to injuries. DuRocher signed with Oregon and later transferred to UW.

2002 — 3 (David Beall, Cody Boyd, Isaiah Stanback). UW’s take: 1. Stanback only UW signee of this group.

2001 — 4 (Evan Benjamin, Ty Eriks, Justin McCullum, Reggie Williams). UW’s take: 3. In the last class that will likely be ranked higher than this year, the Huskies pretty much dominated in-state, losing only McCullum to Stanford of this group.

2000 — 5 (Dan Dicks, Skyler Fulton, Jimmy Newell, Larry Stevens, Zach Tuiasosopo). UW’s take: 3. Huskies lost Fulton to ASU and Stevens to Michigan, but otherwise cleaned up in-state in Neuheisel’s first full class.

1999 — 6 (Paul Arnold, Matt Berry, Dan Major, Robin Miller, Brett Pierce, Jeremey Williams). UW’s take: 1. During the year when UW transitioned from Jim Lambright to Neuheisel, the Huskies got only Arnold, though he was by far the most highly-touted of the group.

1998 — 5 (Luke Huard, Chris Jackson, Jared Jones, Carlos Pierre-Antoine, Matthias Wilson). UW’s take: 1. Wilson was lone Husky out of this group.

1997 — 5 (Ty Gregorak, Ja’Warren Hooker, Drew Miller, Victor Rogers, Marques Tuiasosopo). UW’s take: 2. Huskies got Hooker and Tuiasosopo.

So as you can see, the best UW has done previously is three of four, in 2001 and last year, making this season the most successful Husky effort, in terms of getting Times’ Blue Chip players.

EDITOR’S NOTE — I fixed an early copy-paste error that had 1997 incorrectly indicated as 1998.

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