BUMP AND STACY

247Sports’ Huffman: Where UW Huskies’ 2024 recruiting class stands

Dec 20, 2023, 3:26 PM

UW Huskies Kalen DeBoer Michael Penix Jr....

UW Huskies coach Kalen DeBoer talks with QB Michael Penix Jr. during a 2023 game vs. Utah. (Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

(Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

The UW Huskies are less than two weeks away from the College Football Playoff, but they took care of some other big business on Wednesday.

Brock & Damon’s Playoff Preview: Greg McElroy on how UW Huskies and Texas compare

Wednesday was the early national signing day, which saw many of the top recruits in the nation join their new programs, such as at Washington.

Someone who’s locked in to all these college recruiting is Brandon Huffman, who is the national recruiting editor for 247Sports.

Huffman joined Seattle Sports’ Bump and Stacy on Wednesday and shared his thoughts on Washington’s recruiting class for this cycle.

“It’s interesting because they have (high school) 16 players in the 2024 class,” Huffman said. “And usually you see a bump after a good year in the ensuing class.”

Washington is 13-0 and ranked No. 2 in the country this year, but the Huskies were pretty dang good in 2022, as well, going 11-2. But UW’s 2024 is class is ranked 29th by 247Sports, which is what the Huskies’ 2023 class was ranked, too.

“You would have thought you’d see a bump in the 2024 class, and it hasn’t really been the case,” Huffman said. “It’s not a highly-rated class, there’s not a lot of depth in it.”

But, Huffman, said, the Huskies are using the transfer portal well because of the amount of talent they’re about to lose to graduations and the NFL Draft.

“So they’re going to plug those gaps,” he said.

While UW may not have a highly-touted class this year due in part to an emphasis on the transfer portal, Huffman thinks the Huskies’ recruiting strategy will be a bit different next year.

“I think in 2025, you might see them kind of trend back towards being more high school class-heavy, and then just filling some key parts and some key positions via the portal,” he said.

What makes Washington’s recruiting class interesting, Huffman said, is how it’s much different than the other three playoff teams: Michigan, Alabama and Texas, the latter of which is UW’s Sugar Bowl opponent.

“Alabama, they will take a few portal guys here and there, Michigan, a couple portal guys here and there, Texas, a couple portal guys,” he said. “But those three schools, they’re winning, because they develop and they’ve recruited really well at the high school ranks.”

“And I think Washington will end up being in that same boat, but there’s still a lot of chips that they were pulling from the previous regime and then there were some key players that were older guys, so there was more of a need to get immediate impact players via the portal rather than the high-school ranks,” Huffman later added. “I think in 2025 it’ll be back to the Chris Petersen era where it’s heavy on high school recruits.”

Listen to the full third hour of Wednesday’s Bump and Stacy at this link or in the player near the top of this story.

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