BY Seth Kolloen 01:45PM 02/02/2011

UW signing day rundown — defense

Washington coach Steve Sarkisian tiried to fill this recruiting class with more physical defensive players, especially on the corner.

Washington coach Steve Sarkisian introduced the Huskies’ 23-man 2011 recruiting class on National Signing Day. Ten offensive players and 13 defensive players make up the class. Washington could still reach the maximum of 25 scholarships in this class.

This being a different type of sports site, we offer a different rundown of football commits. We’ve listed them by how many stars they earned (according to the indispensable Scout.com). For the bigger recruits, we have video, a little bit about their background, where they fit in, and what coach Sarkisian has to say about them. And at the bottom of the post, we’ve broken the list down by star rating, position, and region.

Junior college recruit

Thomas Tutogi, 6-foot, 251 pounds, MLB
SoCal — Southwestern C.C. (Chula Vista)
Icebreaker: “Wanna be our Owen Marecic?” Tutogi scored 10 TDs for Southwestern as a short-yardage back. He played running back in high school, and his brother Taimi is an H-back at Arizona.
Sarkisian’s take: “Thomas possesses the real inside backer type mentality. He’s got great hand-eye, very good feet, but he’s going to hit you in the mouth. He’s an iso run stopper.”

High school — Four-star recruits

James Sample, 6-2, 191, #22 S
Central Valley — Grant Union (Sacramento)
Icebreaker: “Thanks for the national props!” Sample made his commitment to Washington public at halftime of the US Army All American Bowl.
Sarkisian’s take: “U.S. Army All-American; is a big, beautiful looking guy. Long, rangy, can play man-to-man coverage in the slot and knock a guy’s helmet off the next snap.”

Taniela Tupou, 6-2, 265, #30 DE
Puget Sound — Archbishop Murphy (Everett)
Icebreaker: “Can you show me a few tricks?” Tupou told the Seattle Times that one of his hobbies is performing the traditional Polynesian fire-knife dance.
Sarkisian’s take: “A kid who we’ve had in camp for two years. A lot of versatility. He’s played inside, played outside. He’s dominated football games at his level.”

Three-star recruits

Corey Waller, 6-2, 210, #31 OLB
SoCal — Polytechnic (Long Beach)
Sarkisian’s take: “The first thing he really knows to do well is rush the passer. Very similar effort type to Hau’oli Jamora but has the versatility (and played) some middle backer for them.”

Danny Shelton, 6-3, 300, #32 DT
Puget Sound  — Auburn
Icebreaker: “Got any weight loss tips?” After he decided to go out for wrestling, Shelton lost 40 pounds in a month to make weight. He was a state 4A semifinalist.
Sarkisian’s take: “A real beast. This guy’s the real deal inside. A guy who probably could have gone to any school in the country. Tremendous student.”

Evan Zeger, 6-2, 200, #35 S
Nevada — Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas)
Icebreaker: “Welcome Back!” Zeger played his junior season at Skyline High in Sammamish, winning a state 4A title with the Spartans. Father played at Washington.
Sarkisian’s take: “Another big, physical safety with room to grow. A 4.4 type guy. True middle third safety.”

Matthew Lyons, 6-2, 188, #61 OLB
SoCal — Dorsey (Los Angeles)
Sarkisian’s take: “They nicknamed him the Hit Man. He’s a physical kid. I’ve never seen so many helmets knocked off in a highlight reel. We love the physical presence.”

Jarett Finau,6-3, 235, LB/TE
Puget Sound –  Juanita (Kirkland)
Sarkisian’s take: “(A) 6-3 kid, defensive end, tight end, outside linebacker, played a lot of stand up. Has the ability to rush the passer, play in coverage.”

Marcus Peters, 6-0, 179, #69 CB
Bay Area — McClymonds (Oakland)
Sarkisian’s take: “It was a dog fight to get him here. In the end everybody in the country was calling on him. He’s a very well-versed football player. He’s coming here to play corner. Returned six punts for touchdowns. We want to play more bump-and-run, more man-to-man, and Marcus possesses that.”

Connor Cree, 6-5, 225, #89 DE
Puget Sound — Skyline (Sammamish)
Sarkisian’s take: “A really versatile kid. I think Connor possesses a lot of the defensive end characteristics coach Holt is looking for. Long arms, tremendous amount of effort, ability to play on the edge and contain the football. Love the kid because of his length and work effort.”

Scott Lawyer, 6-2, 197, #106 OLB
Bay Area — Oak Grove (San Jose)
Sarkisian’s take: “Real speed demon. If there is one word that would describe him, it’s speed. He’s a tremendous edge rusher.”

Two-star recruits

Travis Feeney, 6-4, 201, S (Not rated)
Bay Area — Pinole Valley (Pinole)
Sarkisian’s take: “Freakish athlete. Extremely physical for the wiry body he possesses. Another guy I think who is going to grow in to his body. I think his future is so bright. This guy has the right makeup to be something very special down the road.”

Antavius Sims, 6-2, 200, ATH (Not rated)
Americus, GA (Americus-Sumter HS/Ventura College)
Sarkisian’s take: “He played quarterback at Ventura College. Played corner for them all summer long, but they needed him to play quarterback. We’re bringing him in as an athlete, but he possesses the attributes we’re looking for at the corner spot. He’ll probably be returning kicks and we’ll have some quarterback calls, as well.”

Offensive signees


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