That feeling you’re experiencing is not a curious case of UW déjà vu.
Though the details are undeniably similar. In the 2020 class, Washington received a commitment from Jay’Veon Sunday — a bruising running back from south Texas.
And on Thursday, Husky running backs coach Keith Bhonapha went back to the same well.
This time, it was Caleb Berry — a 6-foot, 209-pound running back from Lufkin, Texas — who announced a verbal commitment to UW.
Berry — who is ranked as a three-star recruit and the No. 43 running back nationally by 247Sports — chose the Huskies over Texas Tech, Nebraska, Arkansas, Washington State, Boise State, Hawaii, Houston and more. He rushed for 874 yards, 5.7 yards per carry and 15 touchdowns in a breakout junior season for Lufkin High School, according to 247Sports.
Berry is also the first — and perhaps final — running back commit in UW’s rapidly-growing 2021 class. The Huskies have also been pursuing a pair of California standouts in San Diego’s Byron Cardwell and Fresno’s Jordan Hornbeak, but it’s unclear whether Washington will have room for another running back. The Huskies already have six scholarship tailbacks — seniors Sean McGrew and Kamari Pleasant, redshirt sophomore Richard Newton, redshirt freshman Cameron Davis and true freshmen Sunday and Sam Adams II — on their active roster, and four of them will have remaining eligibility in 2021.
The bruising Berry is the 12th verbal commit in UW’s 2021 class, which is currently ranked 38th nationally and third in the Pac-12 by 247Sports.
Though Washington has historically leaned on recruiting West Coast regions, its 20 offers in Texas in 2021 are second only to California (27). It’s also the most offers to the Lone Star State since 2016. Even so, Berry is the first Texan to commit in the current class.
There are four players from the state of Texas on UW’s current roster — senior defensive lineman Levi Onwuzurike, sophomore offensive lineman Victor Curne, freshman linebacker Cooper McDonald and the aforementioned Sunday.
Berry — who also runs the 100 and 200 meters on the Lufkin High School track team — will likely be the next to join the list.