Peyton Waters was a basketball player when he arrived at Lake Balboa Birmingham High in Fall 2020. During the spring pandemic season, he did not go to football. It took him just two seasons of varsity football to become the city section’s top two-way player as a cornerback and receiver. He professed his allegiance to the University of Washington during an announcement in the school gym on Thursday.
Waters’ meteoric rise is no accident. His athleticism, instinct and length make him a hitter. He was the 2022 City Section Open Division Player of the Year.
As a junior, he caught 60 passes for 1,077 yards and 11 touchdowns. He was fielded as a Wildcat quarterback and rushed for 491 yards and 11 touchdowns. He had 38 solo tackles and four interceptions.
Standing 6 feet 10 inches tall and weighing 180 pounds, Waters has a 4.1 grade point average and has completed official recruiting visits to UCLA, Washington, Stanford, Northwestern and Utah.
He replaced receiver-defensive end Arlis Boardingham, now playing in Florida, and led Birmingham past Garfield in the City Section Open Division championship game. He expects to play college cornerback, and his continued progress at that position makes him an interesting prospect.
Waters said he felt “connected” during his official visit to Washington last week. “I felt like I could develop academically and athletically,” he said.
UCLA appears to have made a late start, but only got involved in recruiting Waters in March. He said the Bruins were “very close,” but after waiting so long to show interest, Waters wondered if he was a priority in their plans.