The first question presented to University of Washington coach Jimmy Lake on his final media interlude before Saturday night's game against California was not about the Bears. Nor was the second or even the third inquiry.
No, the discussion centered around Emeka Megwa.
In his first opportunity to discuss the Texas running back — who will pass up his final high school season to enroll at the UW — Lake was decidedly upbeat at Thursday's morning session.
While stressing this was solely the teenager's own decision, that the Huskies don't encourage this sort of thing, the coach acknowledged he was most pleased to get the big-name recruit into his program early.
"It was his personal choice of deciding to enter into college early," Lake said. "It's just like a personal decision when players decide to skip the spring quarter of their high school year and enroll in January. We just had Sam Huard skip his spring quarter and come out for spring practice. We don't talk them into it. It's all on them."
That said, the Husky coach has to be pleased that a player who is undoubtedly his top recruit for the class of 2022 already is in the fold, reclassified and signed to a letter of intent.
Megwa chose the Huskies from nearly 40 scholarship offers, with Alabama and Notre Dame other finalists for his services. The other rejections were still like a who's who of teams, including Oklahoma, Ohio State, Georgia, Texas, Texas A&M, and Penn State.
"He's a talented running back, he's really big and he's physical," Lake said. "He sees defenders where they're going to be before they show up and he breaks tackles and makes guys miss."
The 6-foot-2, 220-pound Megwa from Fort Worth rushed for more than 3,000 yards and 45 touchdowns, even while skipping his senior year, a move prompted by an undisclosed injury. Of course, he'll receive the finest medical treatment at the UW in bouncing back from physical ailment.
"We have to get him into shape," Lake said, "and be patient with him."
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