Washington finally got a signature this morning from one of the most prized members of this recruiting class when DT Jacob Bandes signed on the dotted line. The 6’3, 306 lbs Bandes is rated as a 4 star prospect and is the #73 overall recruit in the country per the 247 composite. However, 247’s internal rankings have him at #32 overall and a candidate to earn a 5th star in their final rankings.
Bandes hails from Pitsburg, California which is in the Bay Area east of San Francisco. There was talk that Cal (Berkeley is the closest major campus to his hometown) might be the other team to beat but Washington held a solid lead throughout his recruitment and Bandes made the commitment public in August. He took one official visit to Colorado and had Oregon and Florida in his top 8 but never seemed serious about looking elsewhere. There has been some surprise that Bandes didn’t have a more impressive offer list considering his talent level (no USC, Bama, or Ohio State) but he did pull an offer from Clemson who are known for their ability to find and develop talent on the defensive line.
Bandes’ made a name for himself nationally in July after he dominated at the Opening Finals where he was named the DL Overall MVP in a group made of the most talented prospects in the country. Scouting reports say that he has an amazing first step and get off the line with speed and power. He also has tremendous strength and can bull rush with the best of him. If there’s one concern it’s that he appears to have some bad weight. But if anything it should make fans more excited to imagine what he’s capable of after some time in the UW strength and conditioning program.
The Huskies have a tremendous need at DT with the graduations of Greg Gaines, Jaylen Johnson, and Shane Bowman and Bandes is one part of an insane collection of talent in this class to potentially replace them. This season the entire freshman class redshirted with the new 4 game rule so Tuli Letuligasenoa and Sam Taimani both could crash the depth chart. But given Bandes’ elite standing as a recruit and the fact that he will be enrolling at UW in a few weeks to be here for all of spring ball there’s a good chance that we see him on the field from day 1.
Here are some of Bandes’ junior year highlights.
And here are some highlights of Bandes at The Opening Finals