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2018 Pac-12 preseason All-Pac-12 teams: seven Washington Huskies on first team

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Four teams of the Pac-12’s best players going into 2018.

NCAA Football: Pac-12 Championship-Southern California vs Stanford John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

1st Team

Offense

QB Khalil Tate Jr. Arizona - The conference’s scariest QB can be straight up unstoppable at times. Expect him to run for massive yards and TDs this year and terrorize defenses.

RB Bryce Love Sr. Stanford - What else needs to be said about Love? The unquestioned best player returning to the Pac-12.

RB Myles Gaskin Sr. Washington - Gaskin would be the conference’s best running back almost any year except this one because of Love’s surprise return. Gaskin coming back to break Washington’s all-time records was a surprise as well given how good he has been in his first three years in Seattle.

WR N’Keal Harry Jr. Arizona State - Without a doubt, the conference’s best WR. He’s big and physical, but also fast and athletic and could test 1,500 yards this year.

WR J.J. Arcega-Whiteside Sr. Stanford - Broke out in 2017 and is poised for star status in 2018. He’s the conference’s toughest pass catcher to defend in the red zone.

TE Caleb Wilson Jr. UCLA - Wilson was probably going to be the conference’s best TE in 2017, but he got hurt early. He should fulfill that potential in 2018.

OL Trey Adams Sr. Washington - Very excited to see what the 6’8 335-pound tackle with massive NFL potential can do as a healthy senior.

OL Nate Herbig Jr. Stanford - The next big, powerful Stanford offensive lineman in line that could be an All-American.

OL Kaleb McGary Sr. Washington - McGary might be the biggest physical freak in the conference that’s a lineman. He’s 6’8 320 and has the athleticism of a power forward.

OL Toa Lobendahn Sr. USC - Lobendahn has battled injuries, but is one of the conference’s best when healthy. Let’s hope he can stay healthy all of 2018.

OL Jesse Burkett Sr. Stanford - A senior leader on the Cardinal offense line and a big part of why Love has so much room to run.

Defense

DL Greg Gaines Sr. Washington - A huge plug in the middle. Gaines is poised for a year almost like the one Vea had last year.

DL Jalen Jelks Sr. Oregon - The conference’s best player on the edge. A long athlete who can rush the passer and snuff out the run on the edge.

DL Christian Rector Jr. USC - Solid and strong with the explosion to get into the backfield. Rector is turning into the next great Trojan defensive lineman.

DL Porter Gustin Sr. USC - Defensive end or linebacker, it doesn’t matter, Gustin is a first teamer as long as he is healthy.

LB Cameron Smith Sr. USC - A guy who easily could have gone to the NFL, but who came back and is the favorite to win Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year.

LB Troy Dye Jr. Oregon - Dye is right there with Smith as the conference’s best defensive player and right there with Jelks as one of the nation’s best at making plays in the backfield.

LB Bobby Okereke Sr. Stanford - Okereke might be the most impactful of all these linebackers. He’s a playmaker and senior leader for the Cardinal D.

DB Taylor Rapp Jr. Washington - Rapps done a lot in his first two years at Washington as an All-Pac-12 player, but it feels like this is his year to step up and turn into an All-American with five INTs, or more.

DB Marvell Tell Sr. USC - Probably the best overall DB in the conference, Tell is the anchor of the back of the Trojan defense and excellent against the run and the pass.

DB Byron Murphy So. Washington - Murphy missed a lot of 2017 due to injury, but watch for him to be the conference’s best CB in 2018.

DB Jordan Miller Sr. Washington - Copy and paste what I said about Murphy here.

Special Teams

K Matt Gay Sr. Utah - Easily the best kicker in the conference.

P Mitch Wishnowsky Sr. Utah - Easily the best punter in the nation.

R Shun Brown Sr. Arizona - Took two punts back for TDs in 2017.

2nd Team

Offense

QB Jake Browning Sr. Washington - Browning took his lumps as a junior, but I think he could be ready for a Kevin Hogan like senior renaissance where he turns back into a star and leads the Huskies to a Rose Bowl.

RB Zack Moss Jr. Utah - Moss quietly had a huge 2017 and is one of the conference’s toughest RBs to defend at 215 with great speed and burst. He should test the 1,500-yard-mark in 2018.

RB Stephen Carr So. USC - Carr simply looked like a franchise NFL back in every sense of the term when he got the ball in 2017. He should turn into an All-Pac-12 back with Ronald Jones out of the way now.

WR Vic Wharton Sr. Cal - Had a bigger junior year than most probably realize with nearly 900 yards receiving and five TDs. Should break the 1,000-yard-mark as a senior.

WR Tyler Vaughns So. USC - Showed his potential after a redshirt year with more than 800 yards receiving in his first season of action. He could almost double that if he keeps fulfilling his potential in 2018.

TE Kaden Smith Jr. Stanford - The big tight end came on huge in the final three games of the Pac-12 season, catching four touchdowns, including two in the Pac-12 Championship Game.

OL Walker Little So. Stanford - Little is Stanford’s next All-American/first round pick offensive lineman. Book it.

OL Andre Dillard Sr. Washington State - Dillard is WSU’s next drafted offensive lineman. Book it. The conference’s best pass blocker.

OL A.T. Hall Sr. Stanford - An underrated standout on the Cardinal offensive line. He holds down the right side of their line.

OL Chris Brown Sr. USC - A veteran polished stud on the Trojan offensive line. One of the conference’s best interior offensive linemen and run blockers.

OL Jake Hanson Jr. Oregon - Could be the next Hroniss Grasu at Oregon and a major NFL prospect. Rare combination of size, athleticism and production as a center.

Defense

DL Jaelan Phillips So. UCLA - DE or OLB Phillips is a star in the making who will be the best player at his position in the conference within the next two seasons.

DL Jaylen Johnson Sr. Washington - Johnson has quietly been a dominant defensive tackle on the Husky D whenever he’s in the lineup. He’s ready for a big senior run.

DL Bradlee Anae Jr. Utah - Difference-making DEs apparently grow in trees in Salt Lake as Anae is poised to be the next stud defensive end at Utah. He’s strong on the edge and can also rush the passer.

DL Brandon Pili So. USC - The big Alaskan made honorable mention all conference as a true freshman. He should progress into a first or second teamer as a sophomore and run stuffer.

LB Ben Burr-Kirven Sr. Washington - BBK is all hustle and a leader of the Husky defense. He moves to the outside in 2018, which should lead to him making more plays in the backfield.

LB Peyton Pelleur Sr. Washington State - The former All-Pac-12 LB got an extra year after missing almost all of last year and should return to being one of the conference’s best.

LB Rick Gamboa Sr. Colorado - A tackling machine that holds down the middle of Colorado’s defense and can make big hits.

DB Julian Blackmon Jr. Utah - A tall athlete with the versatility to play cornerback of safety exceptionally well, he could easily be a first-team player.

DB Jalen Thompson Jr. Washington State - One of the conference’s best ball hawks, Thompson is another player who is right on the edge of first-team in my opinion.

DB JoJo McIntosh Sr. Washington - The somewhat overlooked member of Washington’s secondary is their big hitter and best run stopper. He has the size to punish opponents and rack up tackles.

DB Chase Lucas So. Arizona State - One of the nation’s best freshman DBs last year. He was All-Pac-12 last year and could test first-team honors this year.

Special Teams

K Jet Toner Jr. Stanford - He came into his own as a sophomore and knocked down a lot of big kicks.

P Jake Bailey Sr. Stanford - The conference’s best punter after the untouchable Wishnowsky.

R Britain Covey So. Utah - He’s back and ready to be a dangerous punt returner as long as the Utes put him in the role.

Third Team

Offense

QB Justin Herbert Jr. Oregon - Herbert’s the most-talented QB in the conference with the highest NFL ceiling, but he has to prove it on the field against the conference’s best talent in 2018. He easily could and be first-team at the end of the season.

RB Patrick Laird Sr. Cal - One of the most-underrated players in the conference. Case in point, I’m probably actually underrating Laird by putting him on third team.

RB Tony Brooks-James Sr. Oregon - The smaller playmaker behind Royce Freeman steps into the spotlight. He should have a big season running behind Oregon’s seasoned offensive line.

WR Kyle Williams Jr. Arizona State - Did you know Williams had 60 plus catches 700 plus yards and seven TDs in 2017? Probably not, but he should have even more in 2018.

WR Kanawai Noa Jr. Cal - Did you know Noa had more than 50 catches, 600 yards and four TDs in 2017? Probably not, but he should have even more in 2018.

TE Tyler Petite Sr. USC - Great in blocking and receiving, Petite finished with more than 300 yards and three TDs in 2017.

OL Calvin Throckmorton Jr. Oregon - Throckmorton’s grown into one of the conference’s best lineman after starting as a true freshman.

OL Patrick Mekari Sr. Cal - Mekari helped shore up the Cal offensive line last year and was named honorable mention All-Pac-12.

OL Chuma Edoga Sr. USC - Edoga has massive talent and is putting it all together as a Trojan. A guy who could easily rocket up to first team.

OL Nate Eldridge Jr. Arizona - Earned All-Pac-12 honors as a sophomore and has a great chance to be the best Wildcat lineman in a while.

OL Nick Harris Jr. Washington - Harris has grown from undersized true freshman starter to one of the rocks of the Husky offensive line.

Defense

DL Benning Potoa’e Jr. Washington - Potoa’e’s been a good contributor to the stellar Husky defense for a while and this should be a breakout season for him.

DL Leki Fotu Jr. Utah - A big chaos-causing DT for the Utes to step up with Lowell Lotulelei gone.

DL Nnamdi Oguayo Jr. Washington State - The talented edge player should be WSU’s next standout D lineman. He had seven tackles for-loss in 2017.

DL Kylan Wilborn So. Arizona - Wilborn exploded as as true freshman and is already one of the Pac-12’s best sackmen.

LB Tevis Bartlett Sr. Washington - Another standout senior LB for the Huskies, Bartlett is moving inside in 2018 where his size should be a huge asset.

LB Drew Lewis Sr. Colorado - The Washington transfer turned into a standout linebacker for the Buffs and will be a senior leader for them in 2018.

LB Koron Crump Sr. Arizona State - Another talented LB who lost a year to injury and gets his senior season back. Expect big things and big plays in the backfield from Crump.

DB Nate Meadors Sr. UCLA - A tough and physical defensive back with tons of experience who will be the new leader of the Bruin secondary.

DB Udo Amadi Sr. Oregon - Amadi’s been a big part of Oregon’s defense turning around and is ready for a big senior season.

DB Alijah Holder Sr. Stanford - He should be one of the Pac-12’s best CBs if he can stay healthy.

DB Iman Marshall Sr. USC - Looks like an NFL CB and has first round potential. Just needs to keep putting it all together.

Special Teams

K J.J. Molson Jr. UCLA

P Alex Kinney Sr. Colorado

R Cameron Scarlett Sr. Stanford

Honorable Mention

Offense

QB Manny Wilkins Sr. Arizona State

RB Soso Jamabo Sr. UCLA

RB Bolo Olurunfunmi Sr. UCLA

WR Chico McClatcher Jr. Washington

WR Shun Brown Sr. Arizona

TE Drew Sample Sr. Washington

OL Layth Friekh Sr. Arizona

OL Tim Lynott Jr. Colorado

OL Lo Falemaka Sr. Utah

OL Andre James Sr. UCLA

OL Luke Wattenberg So. Washington

Defense

DL Jordon Scott So. Oregon

DL Dylan Jackson Sr. Stanford

DL Jovan Swann So. Stanford

DL Javier Edwards Sr. Colorado

LB Chase Hansen Sr. Utah

LB Colin Schooler So. Arizona

LB Tony Fields So. Arizona

DB Myles Bryant Jr. Washington

DB Evan Worthington Sr. Colorado

DB Alameen Murphy Sr. Stanford

DB David Morris So. Oregon State

Special Teams

K Jameson Stefanou So. Colorado

P Dylan Klumph Sr. Cal

R Salvon Ahmed So. Washington