If you believe the roster, there are only 9 scholarship seniors, and one of them (Kuithe) might get a redshirt and return. A few others (Phillips, Yassmin, Thomas, ???) have indicated they are done. Waiting on decisions from a few who are undecided about returning (Rising, Kuithe, Curry, Bernard, Vele, ???).
Currently 22 commits, including transfers. This year there is no 25 limit, BUT the 85 total scholarship limit is still in effect. At the end of the season, the Utes were using all 85.
The Utes are still recruiting, with 8-9 kids on their wish list. Won’t get them all, but will probably sign a few.
2-3 of the 22 are mission kids but the Utes expect 2-3 kids back from missions, so that’s a wash.
Utes currently in the portal:
DE Tyler Wegis
CB Malone Mataele
LB Mason Tufaga
LB Ethan Calvert
TE/WR Landon Morris
Incoming from the portal:
LB Levani Damuni from Stanford
DE Logan Fano from TDS
Add it all up, and we must think there will be 5-8 more in the portal after the Rose Bowl. Could be as many as 10. It depends on how many of the ‘undecideds’ return (Rising, Kuithe, Bernard, Vele). A few probably already have decided to portal and are hanging around for the trip. A few are going to get squeezed out. No names please.
So I’ll throw this out for discussion because I don’t have the answer. Could the (hopefully) returning seniors like Cam and Brandt actually be designated as a preferred walk-on status because they’d be compensated way more than the scholarship value through NIL? Would that free up a scholarship? Is there another maximum roster number that limits this tactic? UPDATED: I think the NIL deals are only confined to scholarship athletes, partially due to TDS’s Built Bar deal for all walk-ons causing legal scrutiny.
I don’t know how much of an actual crunch there will be. We have always had a number of “sign and send” kids get recruited. We will likely be seeing more leave than we think are leaving, some to the portal, some to their next chapter outside football. Some of the kids listed in out 20 listed may be PWO’s, too.
Yes, we are not used to what we are seeing now. Winning at the level we are playing at has a habit of causing this problem - and it’s a good problem to have. When you look at what has been invested here over the last decade in training facilities and the stadium, it definitely turns the heads of recruits.
Kyle and crew have got this.
Totally agree. This is not our problem to figure out, and this isn’t Whit’s first rodeo.