Despite program’s rise, UW’s Chris Petersen continues search for ‘underrated’ recruits

In interview with on 710 ESPN Seattle, Petersen also says Jake Browning has bulked up and is 100 percent healthy.

Over the years, Washington coach Chris Petersen has made well known his disdain for recruiting services’ star rating system.

For nearly a decade, Petersen and his staff thrived at Boise State with the kind of castoff players that, by and large, weren’t recruited by Pac-12 programs.

Entering his fourth season at Washington, and coming off the Huskies’ first trip to the College Football Playoff, Petersen has maintained a similar approach to recruiting.

In an interview Tuesday morning with “Brock and Salk” on 710 ESPN Seattle, Petersen was asked if the Huskies’ 2016 breakthrough has opened new doors in recruiting.

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“It’s a little bit different,” Petersen said. “I do think that there’s maybe kids from further away that are interested in us, but I go back to this: I’m not really looking for different kids than we got a couple years ago. Look what those kids did — the Sidney Joneses, the Budda Bakers. Those type of guys, the guys that we still have in our program. Those were underrated kids. So we’re trying to find those kids that we think fit our culture, that have a big upside that we can develop and who buy into what we’re all about.”

That said, the Huskies have done well — especially lately — to land more high-profile recruits. On Monday evening, the Huskies picked up a verbal commitment from four-star offensive tackle Matteo Mele.

For perspective: In eight years at Boise, Petersen and his staff signed four four-star recruits. Of the nine recruits committed to UW for 2018, seven are rated by Scout as a four-star prospects — for a class that’s ranked 15th nationally.

“One of the things in the recruiting process that you’ve got to pay so close attention to — doesn’t matter who you are, where you are — is…

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