Utah Utes 2021 prospect Ceyair Wright taking a different approach to recruiting

Ryan Kostecka

It may be the month of September, and the COVID-19 pandemic may be seriously hindering recruiting for most of the college football programs throughout the country. But for the University of Utah, head coach Kyle Whittingham and co. got off to a stellar start in recruiting but have since slowed down and missed out on a couple of top prospects.

Headlining Utah's 2021 recruiting class is quarterback Peter Costelli, one of the top-ranked passers in the country according SI All American's John Garcia.

Joining Costelli is one of the premier running backs in the country in soon-to-be four-star running back Ricky Parks out of Gaither High School in Tampa, Florida. The Utes the secured their first wide receiver commit of the 2021 class when Deamikkio Nathan, the playmaker out of South Grand Prairie High School in Grand Prairie, Texas, announced his commitment to the Utes on July 1.

All three players have been named SI All-American nominees.

The defense is starting to thrive as well, with four-star linebacker Mason Tufaga and three-star linebacker Trey Reynolds, both SI All-American nominees, already on board. Utah then added athlete Velltray Jefferson and safety Darrien Stewart over the weekend to help the program jump to No. 9 in the conference.

But the Utes are still lacking at cornerback, and need to find that one recruit who will be an instant game-changer once they set foot on campus.

Ceyair Wright could be that man for the Utes.

Utah is making a strong push for one of the top defensive backs in the nation, hoping that their recent run of success — having all four starting defensive backs sign NFL contracts this past season —will help lure some of the top prospects in the nation.

Wright is just that, checking in as a consensus top-10 cornerback in the nation and top-100 prospect.

When watching his tape, he just oozes potential and his speed, athleticism and size really stand out. He comes from a track background where he ran a 10.84 100-meter and was part of the state champion 4x400-meter relay team as a junior last season — all all of that speed translates to the field. He also shows very good quickness as well, a combination that is beloved by college coaches.

He's built for press coverage with his long arms and quick-twitch hip movement, and does a phenomenal job of tracking the ball in the air, which comes from his background as playing receiver as well. He rarely uses false steps when breaking on a ball, and often quick enough to bait a quarterback into throwing to the sideline where he has a chance to make a play.

But with the recruiting dead period extended all the way to Jan. 1 — and Wright wanting to make his decision at the All-American Bowl at the start of the New Year, that leaves very little time, if any, for official visits.

So Wright will take the matter into his own hands and is looking at taking multiple unofficial visits prior to his decision. Of course this is completely allowed, as it will allow Wright to get a better feel for the campus and the programs he's already close with.

Here's a complete breakdown by Garcia regarding what Wright can do at the next level...

Prospect: Ceyair Wright
Status: SI All-American candidate
Vitals: 6-foot-1, 175 pounds
Position: Cornerback
School: Los Angeles (Calif.) Loyola
Schools of Interest: ASU, Utah, Oregon, Stanford, USC, Michigan, Penn State, Wisconsin, Oklahoma, and more.
Projected Position: Cornerback

Frame: Ideal size for man-to-man with length. Plenty of room to add weight in the upper and lower body.

Athleticism: Born to play defensive back. As all can see through his 30-plus offers, Wright’s naturally bendy hips and change of direction are as good as it gets at the high school level. The type of athlete strength coaches drools over. Ran in the 10.9’s in the 100m (track).

Instincts: Disciplined in his reads and always has eyes in the right spot. He shines on the football field by making opposing receivers non-factors. Tip drill veteran who attacks the ball in the air. Turnover hungry.

Polish: Projects as a rangy wide-side cover corner. Hips and closing speed to excel in both press coverage and off-ball. Very disciplined bump-and-run footwork. Run support ability a bit of an unknown at this point.

Bottom Line: Give Wright a year on special teams (kickoff, gunner, returner) and by the following season, he’ll be a staple in the secondary wherever he chooses to go to school. Will benefit greatly from a D1 strength program. Fast enough to be worth trying to turn into kick/punt return threat at the next level.

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