Thursday afternoon, West Virginia picked up their fourth commitment of the 2022 recruiting class with wide receiver Jarel Williams.
Today, we bring in SI All-American's Director of Football Recruiting, John Garcia Jr., to break down what the Mountaineers are getting in their future receiver.
Garcia Jr.'s evaluation:
West Virginia dipped back into Alabama for another top skill prospect Thursday in Saraland (Ala.) High School's Jarel Williams, a two-sport star projected to play wide receiver in the Big 12. At 6'3" in the 190-pound range, along with strong overall athleticism and production, there is plenty to like about the newest Mountaineer.
As a junior in 2020, considered Williams' breakout campaign at the 6A program, he led the Spartans with 802 yards and 10 touchdowns receiving, averaging 19.5 yards per catch along the way. It earned him all-state honors in the state of Alabama's second-highest classification.
In digging into the available tape on Williams, it appears he has the physical makeup to contend for WR1 responsibility down the line. The frame is striking against (very good) prep competition, and it makes him a vertical threat without much wasted movement. He puts pressure on the cover man with long strides and enough polish at the top of the route to flip his hips, too. While he isn't the fastest prospect, he has enough juice at that size to work with a complete route tree.
Where Williams surprises given the size is his ability to make plays with the football already in his hands. He showcases some suddenness and the ability to decelerate better than most at his size. As he continues to work on lowering his plane to maximize his lower-body strength and ability to pull away from defenders, this strength will become a bigger one. Williams made plays in the catch-and-run game and return game on routine in 2020, breaking tackles with above-average physicality on occasion, too.
A very good varsity basketball prospect who led the Spartans into the playoffs this spring, there is classic and understandable wide receiver body control on display. Williams is quite comfortable with the football in the air and he can adjust based on the flight of it. As he polishes up his hands, with more examples of plucking the ball away from his body and/or playing at the apex, his catch radius and the quarterback's margin for error will each grow.
Should he graduate early, which he told Al.com is more likely than not at this point, it would mean his hoops career has come to a close and he could focus on his football frame (and game) moving forward. The strength and good weight should come before he suits up for WVU for the first time. It would be a slight upset to see Williams in blue and gold under 200 pounds but the frame may be able to successfully carry more than that. Not only will it enhance his ability as a pass-catcher, but just as importantly his ability as a blocker to aid the run game or spring a fellow wideout.
While not the most explosive athlete, Williams projects as a strong floor wide receiver prospect with great production and easy-to-see physical traits and size on his side. As he improves the frame and increases functional strength, he should be able to factor into the Mountaineer wide receiver rotation at a reasonably early stage.
You can follow us for future coverage by clicking "Follow" on the page's top righthand corner. Also, be sure to like us on Facebook & Twitter:
Facebook - @WVUonSI