Washington State made a bit of news on Wednesday when it announced Jeremiah Mitchell and Shalom Luani had signed letters of intent. Although National Signing Day isn't until February, junior college prospects who will enroll in January were eligible to sign beginning yesterday.
Locking in both Mitchell and Luani is nice, but the real bonus is getting both players in for spring football. It's often a challenge to maximize the production from a junior college player. They typically come in with two years of eligibility, some with the added bonus of a redshirt season. In an ideal world, you can redshirt them their first year on campus to help with the adjustment. The issue, however, is most junior college players are recruited because there is an immediate hole to fill and they can make an impact quicker than most high school prospects. What results is almost a wasted year while the players adjust on the fly. That isn't always the case, but often. Vince Mayle during the first half of his junior season wasn't even close to the same level he was at the end of the year or this season.
Being able to have Mitchell and Luani for spring football isn't the same as a redshirt season, but it will surely help. Both players could see immediate playing time next season. Instead of learning on the fly in fall camp, they will join the weight program for offseason workouts and get a few practices under their belts. Hopefully both will be able to hit the ground running in August and play two productive seasons.
You can find more on both players, including highlights and quotes from Mike Leach in Jeff's signing wrap.
In my experience, not many things create Internet debate like the terms underrated and overrated. If a player is not properly rated by whatever random rating system, well that's just an injustice against mankind. Ted Miller of the ESPN Pac-12 blog took a stab at rating some players. Some of those will surely now be overrated while a few not mentioned are even underrated by underrated standards ... or something. Anyway, Isiah Myers and Joe Dahl made the list.
2014 Pac-12 all-Underrated team - ESPN
WR: Isiah Myers, Sr., Washington State: Finished second on the Cougars with 78 catches, and his 972 receiving yards were fifth-most in the Pac-12. His 12 touchdown catches tied for the Pac-12 lead and tied for the second-most in WSU history. He posted three 100-yard games and finished his career sixth in WSU history with 164 receptions and tied for fourth with 19 career touchdowns.
Washington State may not have a new defensive coordinator yet, but on Wednesday the Cougars added two football players who should help the team slow down opposing offenses.
Washington State football has signed safety Shalom Luani (Right) and defensive end Jeremiah Mitchell (Left) to a National Letter of Intent and both will join the Cougars this January in time for the start of the spring semester, head coach Mike Leach announced Wednesday.
Volleyball Signee Mims Named Montana Gatorade POY - Washington State University Official Athletic Site
Taylor Mims, a 2015 Washington State University volleyball recruit, was named the 2014 Gatorade Player of the Year for her home state of Montana, as announced earlier this month by USA TODAY High School Sports.
Cougar Soccer Duo Named to National Lists - Washington State University Official Athletic Site
Washington State’s Jordan Branch and Nicole Setterlund each received recognition from TopDrawerSoccer, Wednesday.