The Stanford Cardinal had some limits they had to work with this season despite winning a Pac-12 Championship. They had limited scholarships to give out and not many targets on their board. Jack Blanchat of Rule of Tree broke down some of the specifics of the Stanford recruiting class here.
If you're just looking at who might be impactful right away, perhaps the most important part of this class is the three tight ends now slated to come play for the Cardinal - Eric Cotton, Austin Hooper and Greg Taboada. After the departures of Coby Fleener, Zach Ertz and Levine Toilolo in the last two years, it was critically important for Stanford to restock at the position that has produced the most productive receivers on the last two Cardinal teams. All three are big kids that will be competing with one another to play this year - and I have to imagine one of them might redshirt as well.
We talked more with Jack about the Stanford recruiting class below.
1. How well do you think Stanford filled positions of need in this class? Are there any places they came up short?
I think the coaching staff did a very good job filling positions of need. First and foremost, the Card picked up three big tight ends to help fill Zach Ertz and Levine Toilolo's spots. Secondly, they found some outside linebackers to help fill the spot that Chase Thomas left open, and finally they found a big wide receiver to hopefully give Stanford a tangible receiving threat this season. I do think they could have added a few more defensive linemen in this class, but given the fact that they only had 12 spots to work with, I'm pleased with the results.
2. Who would you say is the best Stanford recruit in this class?
I would say the best recruit (especially relative to position of need) is Francis Owusu, a wide receiver from Oaks Christian High School in Southern California. He's the younger brother of former Stanford wideout Chris Owusu, and he appears to be everything that his brother was and more - big, agile, good in traffic and in possession of excellent hands. Owusu shouldn't have any trouble getting onto the field this fall, and I think he could definitely be one of the Cardinal's top three receivers by the end of next season.
3. The player I think will make the most immediate impact for the Cardinal is ____________ because ________.
I might have given it away in my previous answer, but I think the player who will make the most immediate impact will be Owusu. However, I also think OLB Peter Kalambayi will be interesting to watch this season - the defensive coaches love to give young players their shot to make an impact, and he's got good speed and instincts. While there is a lot of depth at linebacker, Kalambayi might be good enough to play right away.
4. Who are the under the radar recruits to watch for in this class for UW who could be on the field sooner rather than later?
The under the radar recruits to watch are the tight ends - all three are three-star players - but if I had to pick one, I would pick Eric Cotton. He's 6-foot-6, 230 pounds - the same size as Zach Ertz - and played in-line and split out wide in high school. If he's a capable blocker, he could step right in as Ertz's replacement this season.