With fall camp almost over and the start of the 2012 season just over a week away, the WSU depth chart is beginning to take shape. With that, we now have a better idea of which newcomers will contribute this season.
While most coaches would tell you they would like to redshirt all of their freshman, that rarely happens. We already know at least a few newcomers will play in 2012 and after the jump I take a stab at predicting 2012 fates for all 26 incoming players.
Jeremiah Allison - Jeff Choate said the best 11 linebackers are going to play and I have to believe Allison is in that group. We'll see how much time he sees on defense, but he should play on special teams right away. Verdict: play.
Austin Apodaca - With Jeff Tuel and Connor Halliday locked into the top of the depth chart, it would take a 2009 like string of injuries for Apodaca to see the field. Verdict: redshirt.
Robert Barber - Barber was getting plenty of reps in practice and appeared to be in position to play this season, but an injury, which appears to be serious, will likely keep Barber from playing in 2012. Verdict: redshirt.
Brett Bartolone - Bartolone has been impressive during fall camp and has a good shot to find himself in the two-deep heading into the season. He won't be counted on to play a major role, but he will see some targets this season. Verdict: play.
Mike Bowlin - Bowlin is a lock to play this season as he will be handling both the kickoff and punting duties. Verdict: play.
Austin Brown - WSU is thin on the defensive line and injuries haven't helped recently, but there are still likely enough players ahead of Brown to keep him off the field this season. Verdict: redshirt.
David Bucannon - David's older brother Deone played right away, but it appears the younger Bucannon will get a year of seasoning before joining his brother on the field. Verdict: redshirt.
Teondray Caldwell - Not only will Caldwell play this season, he is going to be one of the leading running backs. With Rickey Galvin playing wide receiver at the moment, Caldwell has a shot to play a lot this season. Verdict: play.
Feddie Davey - Davey has been mentioned in a couple of practice reports, but he doesn't appear to be in the two-deep picture at the moment. Verdict: redshirt.
Rahmel Dockery - Dockery moved from wide receiver to cornerback during fall camp and that adjustment period will likely keep him off the field this season. WSU isn't deep at cornerback, however, so an injury or two could force him into action. Verdict: redshirt.
Denzell Dotson - Dotson enrolled early, but I haven't seen him mentioned in any practice reports. He's likely not in the two-deep and will spend the year getting stronger. Verdict: redshirt.
Keith Ewing - Like Jeremiah Allison, Ewing has a good shot to be among the top 11 linebackers. It could come down to an either or situation in which case my bet would be on Allison playing: Verdict: redshirt.
Sam Flor - No freshman offensive lineman has been able to crack the rotation so like Dotson and others, Flor is unlikely to see the field in 2012. Verdict: redshirt.
Raymond Ford - Ford was a late addition to his class, but was seeing plenty of time before injuring his hand/wrist/arm. Assuming it's not a long-term issue, Ford will likely be in the mix this season. Verdict: play.
Ioane Gauta - Not only with Guata play this season, he may start from day one. Verdict: play.
Alex Jackson - See Rahmel Dockery, the same applies to Jackson. Verdict: redshirt.
Gabe Marks - One of the easiest calls of the class. Marks will play and play a lot. He may end up being WSU's second leading receiver this season. Verdict: play.
Eduardo Middleton - See Sam Flor. Verdict: redshirt.
Kache Palacio - While Allison and Ewing have been mentioned as possible candidates to play right away, I've read less about Palacio and Pettway. Verdict: redshirt.
Khalil Pettway - See above. Verdict: redshirt:
Justin Sagote - Sagote has been running with the second unit and even seeing time with the first team so he is a lock to play this season. Verdict: play.
Niu Sale - Sale is an interesting one. He just recently switched from the offensive to defensive line and it's unknown how he is going to fit there. The late switch makes it seem like he could redshirt, but he does bring some much needed size to the defensive line. Tough one. Verdict: play.
Taylor Taliulu - Taliulu has gotten a long look with the first team defense recently and even if he doesn't start it appears he will see the field in some capacity. Verdict: play.
Destiny Vaeao - Vaeao is raw and under normal circumstances would be almost guaranteed to redshirt. The current depth at defensive end could force him into early action though. Verdict: redshirt.
Pierson Villarrubia - See Sam Flor. Verdict: redshirt.
Theron West - It appears West could be the new Chantz Staden. The junior college running back who returns kicks and sees an occasional carry or two. Verdict: play.
Well, there you have it. By my estimation 11 newcomers will play in 2012 while 15 will redshirt. For the record, I will not eat my shoes if this is incorrect.