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Cal football recruiting: scouting take on athlete Keith Washington

Cal has added some very good athletes to their secondary in this recruiting class and Washington is the latest

Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Where Cal is in regards to upper tier of the Pac-12, they aren't in a position to win a lot of head to head battles in recruiting versus schools like USC, UCLA, and Oregon. They are building back up to point where they can get there, but they aren't there yet.

What Cal can do though is do a better job of identifying talented recruits where they are the outlier in that prospect's top schools. That's exactly what they have been able to do being the only Pac-12 school to target talented athletes like Depriest Turner and their most recent commit, Keith Washington.

Like Turner, Washington was a dual-threat quarterback in high school who is now destined for a position change at the college level.

With that little bit of mystery involved because of his primary impact being at quarterback, what exactly are the Bears getting with Washington?

Keith Washington - 3 star athlete

As I mentioned, Washington made his greatest impact as a quarterback in high school. The good news is that he was primarily a running quarterback and you got to see the athletic traits he showed as a runner that could translate to multiple positions.

He has tremendous acceleration and his ability to cut and explode is evident. He can stick his foot in the ground and go. He also changes directions with little wasted motion and that speaks well for how he might transition as a defensive back.

While seeing him running with the football might make you think he would look pretty good after the catch as a receiver, I believe his future is at cornerback. He has that length teams covet at the position and it's such a huge asset in press coverage and also in breaking up passes. In the brief film available of him as a defensive back, you can see him put that length to good use. Not only did he do a nice job of getting a decent jam on receivers when lined up in press, but he also took away the inside on a play where he broke up a slant that would have resulted in a touchdown.

He's a willing tackler in run support, but it's obvious he needs to get stronger in order to tackle better. He's going to benefit from being in Cal's strength and conditioning program and should be able to add to his frame.

Washington has the speed, quickness, and fluid hips to play defensive back and his height and length make him an ideal candidate as someone who can develop into a corner that can match up versus the taller receivers that are on just about every roster.