Recruiting is such a 24-7-365 deal anymore that it never really has a beginning or an ending.
But what can be seen as a little bit of a kickoff to the efforts for the Class of 2012 comes Sunday when the Huskies will host a Junior Day in conjunction with the men’s basketball game at home against Washington State.
Essentially, the Huskies invite players from the state, and out of state, to attend the game, meet coaches, etc. However, these are unofficial visits (meaning the school can’t pay for the trip or arrange transportation) so it’s always a little hit-and-miss ahead of time on who will attend. Generally, lists leak out afterwards of who all made it.
But Jake Worthen, the West Coast Recruiting Analyst for Scout.com and FoxSports.com, says that Scout has confirmed that at least three of the top recruits in the state — QB Jeff Lindquist of Mercer Island, RB Keivarae Russell of Mariner High in Everett, and receiver Michael Rector of Bellarmine Prep in Tacoma — will be in attendance. (With others expected, though again, hard to pin down ahead of time).
Worthen says Junior Day is often where schools hope that prospective commits will not only begin to know more about the school and coaches, but also begin to form relationships and bonds with each other that may make them want to attend that school later.
“It can be a big turning point for a lot of guys,” Worthen said.
The three in-state players listed above will all be keys to UW’s Class of 2012 and are among the roughly 40 players to whom the Huskies have already given offers (you can see the entire Rivals.com list here, and the Scout.com list here).
Worthen says that Washington “has been probably the most active in the Pac-10 in offering” scholarships so far. He said that fits in with the state philosophy of UW coach Steve Sarkisian of “being aggressive” in all aspects of the program. And Worthen also said it’s a smart way to get in early on California kids.
“For a lot of kids, it matters to be that first one (to offer),” Worthen said.
UW doesn’t have a commitment for the Class of 2012 yet, but so far only five other Pac-12 schools do have commitments, and only USC has more than one.