UW welcomes 18 new Dawgs on Early Signing Day - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

UW welcomes 18 new Dawgs on Early Signing Day

Photo: Washington Athletics Photo: Washington Athletics

By Washington Athletics

SEATTLE – The Washington football program received National Letters of Intent from 18 future student-athletes on the opening day of the first-ever early signing period for NCAA Division I football.
 
Washington's class of 2018 newcomers, which could expand later this week and during the traditional signing period that starts in February, includes players from Washington, Oregon, Hawai'i, California, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, Idaho, Texas and Tennessee  – 10 states in all.
 
Following is an alphabetical list of signees, along with a biographical sketch of each:
 
M.J. Ale • OL • 6-6 / 361 • Tacoma, Wash. (Fife)
Named the 2A South Puget Sound League Mountain Most Valuable Player as a senior in 2017 ... Tacoma News-Tribune All-Area selection as a junior and senior ... as a senior, led the Trojans to a 9-2 overall record and the first round of the state 2A playoffs ... as a junior in 2016, led Fife to a 7-3 record and a state playoff berth ... named the 2A SPSL Mountain Division defensive lineman of the year and also first-team All-SPSL Mountain on the offensive line in 2016 ... played on the varsity as a sophomore, when the team went 7-3 ... ranked the No. 58 tackle prospect in the nation by ESPN ... born in Samoa and spent much of his childhood living in Australia, where he was a three-time Australian Golden Gloves heavyweight champion boxer ... his high school's senior class president ... played for coach Kent Nevin.
 
Draco Bynum • DL • 6-4 / 258 • Wilsonville, Ore. (Wilsonville)
Named the Northwest Oregon Conference Defensive Player of the Year as a senior in 2017 ... also made the all-league first team at both defensive line and tight end ... helped lead the Wildcats to a 10-2 record and the semifinals of the 2017 Oregon 5A State championship … invited to play in the 2018 U.S. Army All-American Game … as a senior, made 41 stops on defense, with five sacks and six tackles for loss … also tallied eight catches for 182 yards and four touchdowns on offense … won the Big Man Challenge at the 2017 Under Armour regional event in Los Angeles … named second-team 5A all-state in 2016 as a junior … earned honorable mention All-Northwest Oregon Conference as a sophomore ... No. 13 strongside defensive end  in the 247Sports composite rankings ... ranked the No. 21 strongside defensive end in the nation by rivals.com ... the No. 40 defensive tackle in the country, according to ESPN ... threw shot and discus, finishing fifth in the state 5A meet in the shotput in 2017 ... played football for coach Adam Guenther.
 
Devin Culp • TE • 6-3 / 235 • Spokane, Wash. (Gonzaga Prep)
Helped Gonzaga Prep to a 9-3 record and the quarterfinals of the Washington 4A state championships … amassed 928 yards, five touchdowns on 79 rushes and grabbed seven receptions for 164 yards and two touchdowns through the first 11 games of the season … first-team All-Greater Spokane League receiver and Tacoma News Tribune first-team all-state selection … as a junior, named the all-purpose MVP of the 4A Greater Spokane League ... the country's No. 98 wide receiver prospect, according to rivals.com ... also a standout on the Bullpups basketball team ... played football for coach David McKenna.
 
Victor Curne • OL • 6-3 / 313 • Houston, Texas (Second Baptist)
Helped Second Baptist to a 7-4 record and the TAPPS Division II state quarterfinals … named the Touchdown Club of Houston's private schools lineman of the year in 2017 ... ranked the nation's No. 24 guard by ESPN ... ranked by 247sports.com as the No. 27 offensive guard prospect in the nation ... rivals.com's No. 60 offensive guard recruit in the country ... played for coach Terry Pirtle.
 
Dominique Hampton • CB • 6-2 / 197 • Glendale, Ariz. (Centennial)
Had an interception and 59-yard touchdown reception in the Arizona 5A championship game to help Centennial win the 2017 title, the school's third in four years … had an interception in the quarterfinals, semifinals and finals of the 5A championships, including a pick-six in the quarterfinals … recorded eight total interceptions … the Arizona Republic's top-rated defensive back in the state  ... the No. 50 cornerback recruit in the country, according to 247sports.com ... ran the 100 and 200 meters in high school ... made it into the state finals in both, finishing seventh in the 100 and third in the 200 ... coached by Richard Taylor.
 
Ale Kaho • LB • 6-1 / 218 • Reno, Nev. (Reno)
Named the High Desert League Player of the Year and also made first-team all-league at running back, defensive end and punter ... also named to USA Today's All-Northern Nevada first team ... helped lead Reno to a 12-2 overall record and the semifinals of the NIAA 4A state playoffs ... rushed for 515 yards on just the first Northern Nevada player ever to be invited to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl ... also invited to play in the Under Armour All-American Game and the Polynesian Bowl ... one of five finalists in the nation for the Polynesian Player of the Year ... as a junior, helped lead the Huskies to a 10-2 record and the semifinals of the NIAA Class 4A Northern championships ... as a sophomore, helped lead Reno to a 9-3 mark and the Northern Nevada semifinals ... rated the No. 32 overall prospect in the nation and No. 2 inside linebacker in the country by 247sports ... the No. 76 player in the nation and No. 5 linebacker in the nation, according to rivals.com ... also threw shot and discus on the track team ... earned all-region honors in the shot as a junior ... known mainly by the name "Brandon Kaho" in high school ... played football for coach Dan Avansino.
 
Trey Lowe • WR • 5-7 / 174 • Portland, Ore. (Jesuit)
The 2017 Oregon Gatorade Player of the Year after rushing for 2,316 all-purpose yards, over 1,700 yards rushing and 35 total touchdowns … invited to play in the 2018 U.S. Army All-American Bowl … led Jesuit (10-2) to the Oregon 6A quarterfinals, … earned 6A first-team all-state at running back as a junior in 2016, when he rushed for 1,800 yards and 34 touchdowns in just seven games (due to injury) … made All-Metro League at slot receiver as a sophomore in 2015 ... the country's No. 48 wide receiver prospect, according to rivals.com ... ranked the No. 23 running back prospect in the nation by ESPN ... ranked the No. 143 overall prospect and No. 4 all-purpose back in the country by 247sports.com ... brother, Keanon, was a standout wide receiver for Oregon  ... a standout sprinter on the track team ... finished second in the 6A state championship meet in the 4x100-meter relay in 2017 ... played football for coach Ken Potter.
 
Matteo Mele • OL • 6-5 / 277 • Tucson, Ariz. (Salpointe Catholic)
Was the top offensive lineman on a team that rushed for 3,779 yards and 52 touchdowns in 2017 ... led the Lancers to a 12-2 overall record and advanced to the state Conference 4A final ... as a junior, team went 10-3 and made it to the 4A state semifinals ... also played on the varsity as a sophomore ... listed as the No. 251 overall recruit in the nation and No. 19 offensive tackle prospect by 247sports.com ... rated the No. 32 offensive tackle prospect in the country by rivals.com ... ESPN's No. 44 offensive tackle prospect in the nation ... played for coach Dennis Bene.
 
Mosiah Nasili-Liu • DL • 6-2 / 281 • Puyallup, Wash. (Emerald Ridge)
2017 Tacoma News Tribune All-Area selection … saw time as a running back and tight end in addition to playing defensive line ... rushed for 497 yards on 85 carries in 2017 ... also caught six passes for 35 yards and notched 47 tackles and three forced fumbles as a senior ... attended Northgate High in Walnut Creek, Calif., as a sophomore, playing running back, fullback and defensive end for the Broncos and helping them to the CIF North Coast Section Division II playoffs in 2015 ... No. 76 ranked defensive end prospect by 247Sports ... the No. 83 defensive end in the country, according to ESPN ... also played baseball in high school, earning first-team All-South Puget Sound League 4A as an outfielder in 2017 ... played football for coach Troy Halfady at Emerald Ridge.
 
Richard Newton • RB • 6-1 / 183 • Lancaster, Calif. (Palmdale)
Averaged 8.0 yards per carry in six games, gaining 248 yards on 31 attempts as a senior … rushed for 1,050 yards and 17 touchdowns as a junior with a single-game high of 294 and five touchdowns in a win over Quartz Hill ... also went for 209 and three scores in a win over Knight … helped lead Palmdale to its first Golden League title in 11 years as a junior ... rushed for 859 yards on the ground and 17 touchdowns as a sophomore ... rushed for 237 yards in one game and 230 in another as a sophomore ... rated the No. 28 running back in the nation by rivals.com ... saw action on the varsity as a freshman, including a 218-yard rushing performance against Knight High ... participated in the long jump, high jump and triple jump in 2017 ... won a league title in the long jump ... played football for coach Erik Nickols at Palmdale.
 
Austin Osborne • WR • 6-2 / 188 • Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif. (Mission Viejo)
Helped Mission Viejo to a No. 2 national ranking, 12-1 overall record and the 2017 CIF Division I state semifinals … ranked as the No. 202 overall player and No. 37 wide receiver by 247Sports … had 47 catches for 889 yards and nine touchdowns as a senior … averaged 26.7 yards per reception as a junior, hauling in 36 passes for 961 yards and 16 touchdowns … two-time first-team All-County (sophomore and junior years) ... listed as the No. 5 prospect in the county by the Orange County Register, prior to his senior season ... rated the No. 22 wide receiver and No. 115 overall recruit in the country by rivals.com ... named to the ESPN 300 and No. 49 wide receiver  ... 247sports.com's No. 41 wide receiver recruit ... a sprinter on the track team who finished seventh in the state in the 4x100-meter relay after having won league and section titles in that event in 2017 ... played football for coach Bob Johnson.
 
Jackson Sirmon • LB • 6-2 / 224 • Brentwood, Tenn. (Brentwood Academy)
Won a state title in each of his two seasons at Brentwood ... helped lead Eagles to a 12-0 record and the Division II Class AAA state championship as a senior ... as a junior, Brentwood finished 10-2 and won the Division II Class AAA title ... intercepted a pass with 25 seconds to go to secure the win in that state final, a 42-38 victory ... named to the Tennessean All-Midstate first team as a junior ... as a sophomore, attended Loyola High in Los Angeles, helping the Cubs to a 9-3 record and the CIF-Southern Section Pac 5 Division quarterfinals ... ESPN's No. 34 outside linebacker in the country ... the No. 17 inside linebacker recruit in the country, according to rivals.com ... rated the No. 225 player in the nation and No. 20 outside linebacker by 247sports.com ... son of Peter Sirmon, a former Oregon and NFL linebacker who was an assistant coach at the UW in 2012 and 2013 ... threw discus and shotput in spring of 2017 ... played football for coach Cody White at Brentwood.
 
Jacob Sirmon • QB • 6-4 / 227 • Bothell, Wash. (Bothell)
Completed 132 out of 227 passes for 2,061 yards, 18 touchdowns and just five interceptions as a senior ... also scored four rushing TDs and handled some of the punting duties in 2017 ... named offensive MVP of the 4A KingCo Conference, as well as first-team All-KingCo quarterback as a senior ... led Bothell to an 8-3 record and the first round of the state 4A playoffs as a senior ... invited to play in the Under Armour All-American game following his senior year ... 167-for-290 for 2,498 yards and 18 touchdowns, with only two interceptions, as a junior in 2016, when the Cougars went 9-3 and made it to the quarterfinals of the 4A state playoffs ... made the Seattle Times all-area team and second-team All-KingCo in 2016 ... went 91-for-153 for 1,227 yards and 11 touchdowns as a sophomore, when he was honorable mention All-KingCo ... father, David Sirmon, played football (and won a national championship) at Montana and is a professor in the UW's Foster School of Business ... uncle, Peter Sirmon, played for Oregon and in the NFL, and was a coach at the UW in 2012 and 2013 ... ranked the No. 30 overall prospect, the No. 2 pro-style quarterback in the country and No. 1 recruit in the state by ESPN ... listed by 247sports.com as the No. 1 recruit in Washington, No. 5 pro-style QB and No. 165 overall prosect in the country ... ranked the sixth-best "pro-style" quarterback in the country, No. 1 recuit in the state and No. 123 overall prospect in the nation by rivals.com ... also participated  in track & field in 2017 ... played for coach Tom Bainter at Bothell.
 
Marquis Spiker • WR • 6-3 / 180 • Wildomar, Calif. (Murrieta Valley)
In three-year career, caught 244 passes for 4,661 yards and 72 touchdowns ... broke the California state record for career receiving TDs (it was 65, held by Earvin Johnson of L.A. Cathedral High since 2000) ... named Southwestern League Player of the Year as a senior in 2017 ... as a senior, caught 83 passes for 1,490 yards and 27 touchdowns ... also totaled 36 tackles and three interceptions ... in a playoff game vs. Santa Margarita, caught 13 passes for 298 yards and four TDs while also notching 18 tackles and an interception ... also had a six-TD game (on 13 receptions for 171 yards) vs. Redlands as a senior ... helped lead the Nighthawks to a 9-3 record and the quarterfinals of the CIF Southern Section Division I playoffs in 2017 ... as a junior, caught 90 passes for 1,737 yards and 26 scores, earning first-team All-CIF Southern Section Division II and CalHiSports.com first-team all-state honors ... also the Riverside Press Enterprise area player of the year and All-Southwestern League as a junior ... in a 2016 playoff game vs. Norco, caught 15 passes for 241 yards ... led Murrieta Valley to a 11-3 record and the CIF-SS Division II championship game in 2016 ... notched 71 receptions for 1,429 yards and 19 TDs as a sophomore in 2015, earning All-CIF SS West Valley Division and CalHiSports.com state all-sophomore team ... also earned MaxPreps.com Sophomore All-America, first-team all-area and first-team All-Southwestern League in 2015 ... Nighthawks went 9-3 and went to the CIF-SS West Valley Division quarterfinals ... ranked the No. 125 overall prospect and No. 14 wide receiver in the nation by ESPN ... listed as the No. 5 wide receiver in the nation and No. 29 overall recruit in the country by rivals.com ... listed as the No. 77 overall prospect and No. 8 wide receiver in the country by 247sports.com ... ran the 100 meters and high jumped on the track team ... played football for coach George Wilson.
 
MJ Tafisi • LB • 6-0 / 224 • West Jordan, Utah (Alta)
Played middle linebacker and tight end at Alta ... in 2017, helped Alta to a 6-5 record and the quarterfinals of the 5A state playoffs ... as a senior, credited with 133 total tackles, including 19 for a loss and four interceptions ... named to the Deseret News 5A all-state first team at middle linebacker in 2017 ... notched 200 tackles, 16 for a loss as a junior, when the Hawks went 11-2 and made it to the semifinals of the state 4A tournament ... helped the Hawks to an 8-4 mark and the 4A state quarters as a sophomore in 2015 ... played on the varsity as a freshmen in 2014 ... listed as the No. 20 ILB in the country by 247sports.com ... ranked the No. 23 inside linebacker in the nation by ESPN and No. 24 by rivals.com ... played for coach Alema Te'o.
 
Sam Taimani • DL • 6-2 / 320 • Salt Lake City, Utah (East)
Known through most of his high school career by the last name Vakalahi ... helped the Leopards to an 11-3 overall record ... named to the Deseret News 6A all-state first team as an offensive guard ... advanced all the way to the 6A state title game ...  as a junior, East went 14-0, cruised to the 6A state championship and a No. 18 final ranking in the USA Today national top 25 ... also won the 6A state title as a sophomore in 2015, when the Leopards went 11-2 ... spent time on the varsity as a freshman ... named the No. 9 guard in the country by ESPN ... 247sports.com's No. 11 guard and No. 255 overall prospect in the country ... ranked the No. 12 offensive guard and No. 213 overall recruit in the county by rivals.com ... played for coach Brandon Matich.
 
Zion Tupuola-Fetui • LB • 6-2 / 250 • Pearl City, Hawai'i (Pearl City)
Played defensive line and tight end at Pearl City ... helped lead the Chargers to a 7-3 overall record and a 6-1 league mark as a senior in 2017 ... named to the Honolulu Advertiser all-state team following his senior year ... invited to play in the 2018 Polynesian Bowl all-star game ... ESPN's No. 75 outside linebacker prospect in the country and the No. 3 recruit in the state of Hawai'i  ... listed by 247sports.com as the No. 41 inside linebacker in the nation ...rated the No. 54 outside linebacker recruit in the country by rivals.com ... played for coach Robin Kami.
 
Colson Yankoff • QB • 6-4 / 204 • Hayden, Idaho (Coeur d'Alene)
Named the 5A Inland Empire Offensive Most Valuable Player as a senior ... passed for 6,411 yards and 55 touchdowns while rushing for 2,121 and 43 scores during his high school career ... as a senior, helped the Vikings to a 9-3 overall record and advanced to the 5A state championship game ... completed 222 out of 325 passes for 2,396 yards and 21 touchdowns, while rushing for 1,027 yards and 12 TDs on just 109 carries ... invited to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl following senior season ... named Gatorade state player of the year ,5A Idaho state player of the year (Idaho Stateman newspaper) and 5A Inland Empire Offensive MVP as a junior in 2016 ... as a junior, was 271-for-400 for 3,129 yards, 27 TDs and just six interceptions, as Coeur d'Alene went 6-4 and earned a berth in the state quarterfinals ... also rushed for 968 yards and 26 TDs on 112 carries in 2016 ... as a sophomore, earned 5A All-Inland Empire League Offensive Newcomer of the Year, going 63-for-101 for 825 yards and seven TDs while rushing 28 times for 968 yards and five TDs ... went 7-3 and advanced to the state quarters as  sophomore ... also saw a little action as a freshman in 2014, when the Vikings went 7-3 and advanced to the 5A quarterfinals ... listed as the No. 92 overall prospect and No. 7 pro-style quarterback in the nation by ESPN ... the country's No. 8 dual-threat QB prospect and No. 157 overall recruit, according to rivals.com ...  247sports.com's No. 4 dual-threat QB and No. 75 overall recruit ... father, Trevor Yankoff, played quarterback at Brown and mother, Tracie, ran track at Biola ... also played basketball and ran track at Coeur d'Alene ... ran the 100 and 200 meters and participated in long jump and high jump ...  ... played football for coach Shawn Amos.

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