Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Tucker: ESPN 150 LB Watson big for KU
By Billy Tucker
The Jayhawks landed a potentially class-defining commitment Tuesday from ESPN 150 linebacker Kyron Watson (East St. Louis, Ill./East St. Louis) and our scouts feel he has the ability to make an instant impact in Lawrence.
What he brings: Kansas is getting an under the radar linebacker who lacks ideal size on paper, but plays bigger on film. He's productive between the tackles but we feel he will move outside at the college level with his good pursuit speed, range and athleticism. He can use speed and lateral agility to avoid blockers but has deceptive explosiveness for his size to take-on and defeat as a downhill defender as well. Watson is a smart, well-rounded linebacker who just needs to add some size.
How he fits: Defensive coordinator Dave Campo runs a version of the 3-4 with a Buck rush linebacker and three true linebackers at the next level. Watson should provide Campo with good scheme versatility as he could potential play both the strong and weakside positions. Also, with continued physical development he could produce in the middle as well, where he is very reactive.
Reminds us of: Former Kansas State linebacker Arthur Brown. They have the same measurables at this stage. They both played inside, but project outside and both possess a lot of explosiveness and short-area burst to the football.
Prediction for performance: Watson has the instincts and quick read-and-react style that Campo likes in his linebackers. While the Jayhawks have some talented young backers coming in from the 2013 class to develop, we feel Watson should still challenge right away for early playing time and enjoy a very productive career with Jayhawks, who were still in need of sound playmakers at the position in this 2014 class.
How the class is shaping up: Kansas has come out of the gate a bit slow as Watson is just its second commit but the No. 4 rated OLB is a big out of state get.