How top-ranked 2018 signees from Pac-12 are faring
The class of 2018 will be entering their third season of college football this fall. Here’s a look back at the highest ranked 2018 recruit for each team and how they are panning out. Today, we look at the Pac-12.
Mark Pszonak contributed to this report.
CLASS OF 2022: Top 100
The skinny: Joiner committed to Arizona at the beginning of his junior season, but then took official visits to both Arizona State and Alabama in the weeks leading up to National Signing Day after a coaching transition. However, he decided to stick with the Wildcats.
After seeing action in two games as a true freshman at quarterback, Joiner transitioned to wide receiver where he had a productive first season in 2019. After totaling 34 receptions for 552 yards and five touchdowns last fall it will be interesting to see how he can further enhance his receiving skills in 2020.
Farrell’s take: Joiner was a a talented dual-threat quarterback who has since moved to wide receiver and has shown tremendous upside at the position. He was coming off injury before the shutdown, so time will tell how he bounces back but he should be a key weapon.
In Tempe, Robertson flourished as a true freshman, being named the PAC-12 Defensive Freshman of the Year after finishing with 77 tackles, 8.5 tackles for a loss, five sacks, one interception and one forced fumble. He followed that up by totaling 74 tackles, two sacks, one interception and three forced fumbles last fall. He returns this season as one of the veteran leaders of the Sun Devils’ defense.
Farrell’s take: Robertson has turned into a terrific player and sure tackler from the start for Arizona State and a team leader. We liked his ability out of high school and he was solid in pass coverage but he turned into a star before we expected.
As a true freshman Craig saw action in nine games coming off the bench. He then started the opener in 2019, but sustained a lower body injury which caused him to miss the remainder of the season. Craig looked ready to ease his way back into action during the spring before everything was shut down, so now he will head into pre-season camp looking to once again prove himself as a possible starter on the line.
Farrell’s take: Craig was an undersized offensive tackle with great feet and a good frame coming out, but we expected it to take a few years for him to develop and it has. However, he was a starter early which speaks to his technique and he’ll be a good one this year.
The skinny: Thomas committed to Colorado over offers from Arizona, Cal, Arizona State, Purdue, Utah and others during the summer leading up to his senior season. After redshirting during the 2018 season, Thomas made the switch from wide receiver to cornerback during the summer camp leading up to the 2019 season. With this late switch he did not make much of an impact, only making one tackle in three games. Hope around Boulder is that Thomas will be able to get into the rotation this season after a year at his new position.
Farrell’s take: Thomas was a tall, rangy wide receiver who needed to fill out but had a good catch radius. The flip to corner is an interesting one and of it works out he will be a long one who can work well against bigger receivers.
The skinny: Addison took official visits to Arizona State, Washington, Nebraska and Michigan, but it really came down to UCLA and USC. He committed to the Bruins in December, however he was never cleared by the school’s admission’s office, so he received his full release in July. Oregon, Nebraska, Arizona State and Washington quickly pursued, with the Ducks winning the chase a couple of weeks later.
After an uneventual true freshman season, Addison totaled 18 receptions for 203 yards and one touchdown last fall. Many expect 2020 to be a breakout season for him.
Farrell’s take: Addison has the size to be a good one and a dangerous weapon in the Pac-12. He was a very good athlete who could have played defense as well out of high school and this is expected to be a huge year for him as one of the focal points of the offense.
The skinny: Quitoriano initially committed to Oregon during the summer leading up to his senior season, but with the departure of Willie Taggart, he never signed with the Ducks. Waiting more than two months after National Signing Day, he eventually signed with Oregon State.
Making 10 starts through his first two seasons he has totaled seven receptions for 113 yards and two touchdowns. With tight end Noah Togiai moving on, the position looks to be Quitoriano’s to lose this fall as he looks ready to become a more consistent threat in the Beavers’ offense.
Farrell’s take: Quitoriano has good size and is a big target and we liked the way he ran routes out of high school. This is his chance to break out.
The skinny: Considering he was planning a two-year Mormon mission after high school, McKee took his time during his recruiting process. He eventually committed to Stanford on National Signing Day over Texas, USC, BYU, Alabama and Texas A&M.
He just recently returned from his mission in Brazil and will enroll as a true freshman with the Cardinal when the campus re-opens. With Davis Mills entrenched as the starter, McKee will battle for the back-up position in pre-season camp.
Farrell’s take: McKee will be in a good situation coming back from his mission as he can learn under Mills and return to the speed of football. McKee was a huge kid with a live arm out of high school and was so good teams were willing to wait two years for his impact.
The skinny: Thompson-Robinson had several scholarship options, even before starting his first game as a high school quarterback. His recruitment came down to Oregon, Michigan, Alabama and UCLA. He chose the Bruins during the spring of his junior year and stuck with the school, even after a coaching change.
After an up-and-down 2018 season, Thompson-Robinson looked more comfortable in 2019 with 2,701 yards passing and 21 touchdowns. Is he ready to take the next step in Chip Kelly’s offense?
Farrell’s take: Thompson-Robinson was a big name out of high school even before starting a game and earned offers based on his potential. He’s been up and down in Kelly’s offense but the talent is there and he should continue to progress.
The skinny: While St. Brown has had brothers playing at both Notre Dame and Stanford, USC pulled away down the stretch and earned the commitment. He made his decision at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl in early January.
St. Brown has not disappointed during his first two seasons with the Trojans, having totaled 137 receptions for 1,792 yards and nine touchdowns while being named All-Pac-12 honorable mention after 2019. Another big season will put him in line to be one of the top wide receiver prospects in the 2021 NFL Draft.
Farrell’s take: St. Brown was one of the best receivers we’ve seen in recent years especially at catching 50/50 balls. He and JT Daniels were unstoppable as teammates in high school and even with Daniels in the transfer portal after losing the job at USC, St. Brown will have a monster season.
The skinny: Tuttle committed to Utah at the conclusion of his junior season. However, after not seeing action during the 2018 season, Tuttle decided to enter the transfer portal where he found a new home at Indiana. With the Hoosiers he saw spot duty in five games last season, completing 6 of 11 passes for 34 yards. He will be competing for playing time this off-season, especially with a healthy Michael Penix Jr. back for the Hoosiers.
Farrell’s take: Tuttle was a tall, skinny quarterback with good accuracy coming out of high school and it’s surprising he transferred so early. He’s the likely backup this season but will be ready if Penix goes down to injury again.
The skinny: Spiker committed to Washington over USC, UCLA, Oregon and Michigan in mid-March. A junior season visit to Seattle firmly placed the Huskies into the lead, which they never relinquished.
Spiker redshirted during the 2018 and then totaled three receptions for 67 yards during limited action in 2019. With some tweaks being made to Washington’s passing attack this off-season, the potential is there for Spiker to have a bigger role in 2020.
Farrell’s take: Spiker was a can’t-miss kid out of high school who was expected to put up monster numbers in college but it hasn’t happened yet. He’s too talented to be held back much longer.
The skinny: Jackson trimmed his list of top schools down to Washington State and Utah before committing to the Cougars during his senior season. However, his time in Pullum was short-lived as he announced his decision to transfer in November of his first season. After playing the 2019 season at Tyler Junior College, he signed with Texas State in December where he hopes to reignite his collegiate career.
Farrell’s take: Jackson was a big-time get out of Texas for Washington State, so it’s disappointing to see him transfer out so early. We wanted to see what he would do in a Mike Leach offense.