Jalen Canty was a bit of a surprise visitor two weeks ago with word of his official visit not surfacing until Saturday night. He apparently liked what he saw as he verbally committed on Monday, choosing the Cougars over offers from Utah and Oregon according to Britton Ransford of WazzuWatch.
At 6-foot-8 and 260 pounds, Canty has the size of a FBS recruit, even if his future position remains in question. He played defensive end and tight end in high school and showed off an impressive combination of size and speed. With his frame, there is a chance he adds some weight and plays defensive tackle or offensive line. That's not to say he doesn't have a chance to stick at defensive end or possibly even tight end. He shows off a lot of athleticism in his Hudl highlights and on the basketball court.
Canty's recruitment has been a bit of a winding road. He drew interest as a basketball player from Washington and California and reportedly committed to Washington during the summer. It was somewhat unclear if that was as a football or basketball player. Steve Sarkisian and his coaching staff apparently thought highly of him.
@HuskyHaul I'm told U-Dub football coaches feel he is a potential NFL player.— Eric Bossi (@ebosshoops) June 18, 2013
The commitment to Washington didn't stick and he verballed to Fresno State in December, this time for sure as a football player. He tripped to Pullman two weeks ago and there was some speculation he had to or was close to committing. He received an offer from Oregon when he got home which slowed the process. He tripped to Utah this past weekend, narrowed his choices to the Utes and Cougs and wen't Crimson.
According to Ransford, Canty has plans to play basketball and football at WSU. That isn't unheard of, but if it does end up happening it would likely mean Canty winds up at defensive end or tight end. I can't imagine he would still be an effective basketball player if he packs on 40 or 50 pounds to play offensive line. Brian Anderson brought up the interesting point that with Canty and Nick Begg in the fold, the Cougars now have a couple of tight-end type players on the roster. Mike Leach used a tight end some at Texas Tech. WSU hasn't had a true tight end during Leach's time in Pullman, but that doesn't mean it isn't in the pipeline. WSU is reportedly recruiting Canty as a defensive end, so we will see what happens.
Although he may be a bit of a project, there is no denying Canty's combination of size and athleticism. I wouldn't be surprised to see him change positions during fall camp, before ultimately settling in during a redshirt year. Canty reminds me a bit of a cross between Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Stephane Nembot. There just aren't many guys at that size who can move like that. Sefian-Jenkins played tight end despite many projecting him to end up as a tackle. Nembot -- who if you don't remember committed to WSU then UW and finally Colorado -- is now playing left tackle.
Canty is the latest player to join the 2014 class. With early enrollees, a couple grayshirts and Sebastian LaRue transferring in, there aren't many spots left to fill this year.