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Arizona football recruiting: QB Brandon Dawkins defines 2014 class

3-star quarterback Brandon Dawkins is the only high school signal-caller in his freshman class.

Casey Sapio-USA TODAY Sports

When looking at the 2014 recruiting class, members of the Arizona football coaching staff has to remind themselves what they came into. Quarterback Brandon Dawkins might be the gem, if only because it's, frankly, quite imperative he develops as the only freshman member of his class at his position.

As nice as the B.J. Denker story was last season, the refusal by Rich Rodriguez to go away from a guy that was smart and tough more than anything else said a lot about what was on the table. Denker's knowledge of the system earned him the starting job, but talent was a hard thing to come by at quarterback.

Recruiting has a nice way of sorting itself out.

It doesn't lie, which is why Dawkins is so crucial for Rodriguez, even with junior college transfer Jerrard Randall joining him as a recruit in this year's class. Arizona has options next season, but creating legitimate competition is a big need.

That doesn't mean Dawkins is the only option. Connor Brewer transferred from Texas and was already getting his feet wet in the Arizona offense. Jesse Scroggins and redshirt freshman Anu Solomon are also in the conversation. But Dawkins acts as the youngest challenger in this quarterback question.

At 6'4, 200 pounds, the Oaks Christian quarterback is big, mobile and is learning how to meld a pro-style thought-process with his ability to manage when plays break down. He might be the best of Brewer, a more traditional quarterback, and Solomon, a player who was expected to challenge for the starting gig last year but never had his redshirt removed.

Dawkins defines the 2014 class as Rodriguez enters another season coming off a surprise year but with his own recruiting work needing to show more than ever.

Updated 2014 Arizona recruiting signee list

OL Levi Walton, Ida S. Baker High School

OL Kaige Lawrence, Chaffey College

LB Antonio Smother, Scottsdale Community College

CB Patrick Glover, Scottsdale Community College

WR T.J. Johnson, Milford Academy

OL Layth Friekh, Centennial High School

DT Jeff Worthy, Santa Ana/Boise State

OL Freddie Tagaloa, Cal

QB Jerrard Randall, NE Miss. Community College

RB Jonathan Haden, Friendship Collegiate Academy

DL Jerod Cody, Glendale Community College

CB Devon Brewer, Central High School (Fresno, Calif.)

TE Trevor Wood, Chaparral High School

OL Jordan Poland, La Jolla Country Day

WR Tony Ellison, Granite Bay High School

RB Nick Wilson, Central High School (Fresno, Calif.)

CB Kwesi Mashack, Vista Murrieta High School

TE Darrell Cloy, La Habra High School