When Junior Adams abruptly left for Oregon on New Year’s Day, Washington’s prospects at wide receiver seemed suddenly perilous.

Would established starters Jalen McMillan and Rome Odunze follow their position coach to a Pac-12 rival? Would the rest of Kalen DeBoer’s newly assembled staff crumble at his feet? And who would he hire to pick up the pieces?

In the months since, DeBoer tabbed highly touted Purdue assistant JaMarcus Shephard as his associate head coach, passing-game coordinator and wide receivers coach; McMillan and Odunze each decided to stay (though fellow starter Terrell Bynum transferred to USC); and the wide-receiver spot was described this spring as the strength of the team.

Crisis was averted.

And reinforcements were secured.

Rashid Williams — a 6-foot-2, 185-pound wide receiver from Pittsburg, Calif. — announced a verbal commitment to Washington Thursday. He’s the first four-star commit in the Huskies’ 2023 class.

“When I went on my unofficial visit, I started feeling it then,” Williams told 247Sports.com. “I like the city. The area around the school is nice and it’s a big city. I like the offense. They’ll throw the ball a lot. And I like the fan base; they put a lot of people in the stands.”

Williams — who took an official visit to Washington last weekend — chose the Huskies from a top six that also included Cal, Oregon State, Arizona, Mississippi State and Stanford. He reported offers from Arizona State, Arkansas, Colorado, Fresno State, Kansas, Miami, Ole Miss, Oregon, Pitt and Utah as well.


The Polynesian Bowl commit was previously scheduled to take official visits to Oregon State on June 3 and Cal on June 23. Instead, he’ll arrive in Seattle next summer.

A favorite target of four-star 2023 quarterback Jaden Rashada at Pittsburg High School, Williams led his team in catches (55), receiving yards (753) and receiving touchdowns (11) as a junior in 2021. He missed his sophomore season with a broken collarbone.

Williams is ranked as a four-star recruit, the No. 18 player in California, the No. 25 wide receiver and the No. 243 overall prospect in the 2023 class by 247Sports. He’s the Huskies’ fourth 2023 commit — joining running back Tybo Rogers, wide receiver Keith Reynolds and linebacker Deven Bryant. All four commits hail from the state of California.

Williams is also UW’s third commit this week, following 2022 College of San Mateo EDGE Sekai Asoau-Afoa and UAB graduate transfer linebacker Kristopher Moll.

Perhaps most notably, he’s the first blue-chip commit of the Kalen DeBoer Era.

As reinforcements go, DeBoer could do much worse.