The Arizona Wildcats have now added a running back to the 2020 class as three-star prospect Jalen John verbally committed Monday.
Our original story can be found here, and here’s a closer look at the tail back.
Height/Weight: 5-foot-11, 180 pounds
School/Hometown: Lakeridge High School (Lake Oswego, Oregon)
Offers: Arizona, BYU, Nebraska, Oregon, Oregon State, USC, Utah
2018 Stats: 210 carries, 1,846 yards, 25 touchdowns
Rankings (via 247Sports): 921st overall, 61st running back, 6th in Oregon
Gabe Encinas: He is a powerful runner that has a good burst to start and only needs one cut to turn up field. He’s not going to try to dance around for extra yardage, he will instead accelerate through the gap and create contact if necessary. Not huge with breakaway speed, clocking a 4.75 40, but shows explosiveness with a 4.40 shuttle and 30-inch vertical.
He is a good runner once he gets outside but a phenomenal runner between the tackles. He can quickly read the holes and see where the defensive front is applying pressure to make his move downfield.
He’s not undersized but the strength and conditioning program will definitely bulk him up with his frame. I think an easy player comparison would be Nick Wilson, but he also some bowling ball abilities like Zach Green.
This is a tremendous pick up for the staff. Highly productive in high school and carried a huge workload which netted him a loaded offer sheet. He was once ranked as high as 195th in the nation and took a massive drop between December 2018 and February 2019, dropping 530 spots, which is ultra suspicious and why you have to watch the film and pay less attention to rankings. To me, he’s a top 450 player.
Brandon Combs: This is another solid pickup for Kevin Sumlin and company for the 2020 class. Whats more is it’s DeMarco Murray’s first commitment of his coaching career.
John is a well-rounded running back. He can pretty much do it all. He is a pretty solid receiver out of the backfield, even flashing his hands to snag a one-handed catch and proceed to make the defense look silly afterwards.
He won’t blow you away with speed but he’s fast enough to outrun defenders, especially if you take a bad angle on him. He also has fantastic vision, able see the smallest crease to accelerate through and gain huge chunks of yardage or score.
His balance, however, is my favorite attribute. He jukes, jives, takes hits, cutes, bounces it to the outside and rarely loses balance. I haven’t seen a running back as balanced and stable as John in some time.
Oh, and his ability to cut and change direction without breaking a sweat...that’s also pretty cool.
As mentioned above, this is another fantastic addition to the 2020 class. DeMarco Murray struck gold with a kid who has a pretty full toolbox along with being ultra productive in high school.