Friday, September 27, 2013
Pac-12 recruiting mailbag
By Erik McKinney
Pac-12 recruiting coordinator Erik McKinney answers reader questions in his mailbag every week. Have a Pac-12 recruiting question of your own? Submit it via Twitter @EMcKinneyESPN or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Babyyao23: You didn't list Joe Mixon visiting Washington this weekend as one of your Top P-12 storylines. I'd have to think that's BIG."
Washington has some work to do to impress ESPN 300 RB Joe Mixon.
ESPN 300 running back Joe Mixon (Oakley, Calif./Freedom) announced his official visit to Washington late Wednesday, and it definitely is big for the Huskies. Mixon released his top five list a while ago, but it appears there is some wiggle room in that group, which consisted of Cal, Florida, Oklahoma, Oregon and Wisconsin. Since then, Mixon has scheduled this official visit to Washington and also given the impression that UCLA is still very much in the mix. It's not a surprise to see Washington back in the picture for Mixon, as the Huskies coaches recruit as well as any in the conference and they have plenty to sell to Mixon, as tailback Bishop Sankey has rushed for 446 yards in only three games. Washington will need to make up some ground on the schools Mixon listed as his top five, but the atmosphere this weekend should help in that regard, and a big win could get the Huskies seriously in the discussion.
Via e-mail: "With former quarterbacks Derek Anderson, Sean Canfield, Matt Moore of recent years playing in the NFL, it would seem that Mike Riley of Oregon State would be a preferred destination for high school quarterbacks wishing to develop their skills and play in the NFL. Current quarterback Sean Mannion leads the NCAA in passing yardage and touchdowns. Backup quarterback Cody Vaz has developed so well that he could easily have been the Beavers quarterback or play for any other college in the nation.
Do any other coaches approach Riley's consistent success with the development of quarterbacks?"
Even though prolonged NFL success hasn't been there for the three guys mentioned -- two backups and one free agent -- it definitely speaks volumes that Riley was able to get all three to that level. I wouldn't put Riley at the head of the class in terms of quarterback developers, simply because there are so many good ones out there. But Riley is going to get his share of quarterback recruits -- that statement backed up by the fact that there are three potential quarterbacks already committed in the 2014 class. Look for the other Pac-12 programs to make it difficult for Oregon State to keep them.
The biggest problem for the Beavers this year was that season-opening loss to Eastern Washington. That killed any national momentum they gained from a very impressive 2012 season. Oregon State will always have difficulty in grabbing the top quarterback talent in the nation, unless they can flip places in the Top 25 with Oregon. But recruits are definitely taking notice of the aerial assault happening in Corvallis, and quarterbacks and wide receivers alike are giving the Beavers more of a look these days. If the numbers continue the way they are -- especially with two wide receivers each year putting up huge statistics -- Oregon State is going to start getting some big-name recruits.