Oct. 13, 2012; Pullman, WA, USA; A group of Washington State Cougars fans look on during the second half against the California Golden Bears at Martin Stadium. The Golden Bears won 31-17. Mandatory Credit: James Snook-USA TODAY Sports
Similar to the offensive side of the ball for the 2013 recruiting class, the future of the Washington State defense looks bright for fans and students. Given how poor the defense performed last season, it gives many players in the 2013 recruiting class an opportunity to play right away.
This Cougars defense ranked No. 101 in the country last season and can use all the help it can get. Specifically the WSU secondary struggled the most giving up over 3,000 yards of passing and 26 touchdown passes. That one player who can help the Cougars the most this upcoming Fall and for years is to come is cornerback Daquawn Brown from Los Angeles, Calif.
Brown was one of the top recruits for the 2013 recruiting class and a surprise pick up for the Cougars. Ranked as the 33rd best cornerback in the country and holding offers from top Pac-12 schools that include UCLA, Arizona State and Washington shows how valuable of a player WSU football coach Mike Leach and staff were able to sign.
Brown is a physical cornerback that has the speed to run with any receiver in the Pac-12 conference and has the hands of a wide receiver. His ability to make big plays on the field gives him the chance to play this upcoming fall and challenge current WSU cornerbacks Nolan Washington and Damante Horton for the starting job. If Brown doesn’t get the starting cornerback position this upcoming fall I would expect him to play in Nickel and Dime packages.
The more experience that Brown can get playing the cornerback position at the division one level, the more production we will see from the cornerback during his four years in Pullman. Playing as a true freshman is the best path for Brown. Former University of Washington cornerback Desmond Trufant started as a true freshman for the Huskies in 2009 and stuck with the starting role for the rest of his college career. Though Trufant had his struggles early on in his career with the Huskies, he improved as a player and was selected in the 1st Round of the 2013 NFL Draft. Who knows if Brown will have a similar career as Trufant, but by playing as a freshman and not red-shirting will make him a threat in the future.
Brown has the potential to make the All Pac-12 freshmen team this year and become a future 1st team All Pac-12 player. He’ll have his struggles this season which is common for all true freshmen players, but he’ll only learn from his mistakes and improve. Leach has got himself a future lock down corner that will make noise in the Palouse and help this Cougar football program get back on the map.
Here’s Daquawn Brown’s Highlight Tape:
–Evan Baron (Follow Me On Twitter: @Evan_Baron)