2019 UCLA cornerback commit Chris Steele had an inkling that he'd be getting an offer from California, where his friends and former Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco teammates Traveon Beck and Bryce Turner both play. He just didn't think it'd be as soon as Monday.
"I'd talked to coach [Gerald] Alexander about the school a couple of times," Steele said. "He let me know that they hadn't offered any 2019 players at that point, but he told me that when they did start offering 2019 players, he was going to make sure that I was one of the first DBs, if not the first DB that he offered."
Steele has already picked the brains of both Beck and Turner when it comes to Berkeley, itself. He chatted with both of them before spring, and both praised Alexander's coaching chops.
"Academically, it's one of the best, and they have a good law school," said Steele. "I know the academics are great. They play good football there, too. Coach Alexander is just a really great coach. My freshman year, I was really big on the camp circuit, so I saw him at a lot of camps, and he got to coach me up. I love the way he coaches. He's really energetic, and I like him a lot."
Another former Brave, Tyrel Thomas, was recruited by Alexander while at Montana State, and he wound up signing with the Bobcats.
"He's told me a lot about coach Alexander, told me he's a really great dude, cares about you off the field," Steele said. "It's more than just football with coach Alexander. I like that a lot."
Steele finished this year with a 3.7 grade point average, and wants to go into city planning, but he's not set on any major at this early juncture. Steele said he plans to make his final decision on National Signing Day. As for that January commitment to the Bruins?
"As of right now, I'm committed, but a lot can change over the next year and a half," he said.