Every time I watch UCLA play, I get a little sad. In 2012, a four-star dual-threat quarterback/athlete named Devin Fuller was deciding where he was going to commit. He eventually chose UCLA over Arizona, Rutgers, and Nebraska. At UCLA, he was moved to wide receiver relatively quickly. He never really got the opportunity to compete for time at quarterback (though he's gotten to use his arm in some gadget plays), and I always wonder if his talent is being wasted at wide receiver and what he could've done as a quarterback in Rich Rodriguez's offense.
I'm not going to feel that sadness with Khalil Tate. A little more than a month after being offered, QB/ATH Khalil Tate committed to the University of Arizona today as a quarterback in the class of 2016:
Tate is a six foot tall (Rivals actually lists him at 5'11"), 200 pound junior out of Junipero Serra High School in Gardena, California. He's a three-star recruit with offers to USC, UCLA, and Florida State.
Importantly, Tate committed as a quarterback. Though Tate is listed as an athlete, he'll above all have the opportunity to compete for time at quarterback. And while the title "dual-threat quarterback" can sometimes be used to refer to fast quarterbacks who can't throw, Tate actually can pass the ball, throwing for 1395 yards last year and averaging 8.8 yards per attempt in his first year as a starter. He still relied heavily on his legs, rushing for 1287 yards, but Tate has plenty of ability and time to develop even more as a passer.
Tate said QBs coach Rod Smith talked to his dad on the phone tonight. After it, Tate's heart started beating fast and he decided it was time— Daniel Berk (@DSBerk) March 17, 2015
Even if Tate doesn't work out at quarterback, his athleticism will allow him to compete at other positions (most likely wide receiver). Above all, though, he will have the chance to play quarterback. Similar recruits who spurned Arizona -- like Devin Fuller -- didn't even get to compete for time at quarterback at their chosen school. Tate isn't going to have that problem.
Tate is in the class of 2016, so we won't see him on campus for nearly another year and a half. In the meantime, take a look at some of his highlights from this past season: