On a pretty warm day on Spaulding Field, ten teams from around the Golden State and one from the Peach State, converged at UCLA for the Bruins' 7on7 Tournament.
More successful teams like the Frat Boyz and Team ASAP were there, but it was GameChangers, a team filled with mostly City Section prospects, and coached by former Oregon receiver James Finley, who left as champions.
Their MVP and catalyst was Joshua Taylor, a 6-3, 175-pound receiver from Los Angeles (Calif.) Franklin. Taylor came up clutch throughout the day, with a number of bigtime catches for scores, including one in the back of the end zone where he jumped over two defenders, palmed it and brought it in for a one-handed catch. The thing you noticed about Taylor was his excellent body control and ability to adjust to the passes. He's got very good speed and good hands. He and receivers coach Eric Yarber spent a good amount of time talking together after the tournament.
The nation's premier safety, Su'a Cravens from Murrieta (Calif.) Vista Murrieta, was the headliner prospect, though, in the tournament. And Cravens did everything you expect from an elite 5-star player, breaking up a number of passes, and then shining on offense, grabbing a number of touchdown passes.
UCLA's committed quarterback Eddie Printz from Marrieta (Ga.) Lassiter threw a bunch on Saturday at the BMOC 7on7, and struggled for much of that day, but looked better on Sunday at Spaulding Field. The ball still doesn't pop out of his hands and he had some passes that fluttered too much but by the end of the day, he seemed to be in a little more of a comfortable place. Still, you could tell he was pressing far too much with the coaches looking on.
Fellow Bruin commit, Keyante Green,played very well, as well as a running back could in a 7on7 tournament. While those aren't designed for running backs, Green showed a good ability to get open out of the backfield and caught just about everything thrown to him, often times in traffic, doing a good job of getting in position to make the catch.
Brendan Langley, the four-star cornerback from Georgia, generally had a good day, despite drawing the unenviable task of having to man up with Cravens. He got torched pretty good by Cravens for a score, but also had a nice jam at the line of scrimmage on Cravens, that rendered him useless. You can probably expect UCLA to offer Langley, the #11-ranked cornerback in the country, but the 6-1 and 180-pounder already has offers from Alabama, Georgia and Florida, among others. We've heard, while Langley liked UCLA and SoCal, that it will be very difficult to ultimately beat out the SEC for him.
Probably the best player during the two-days for Team Georgia was Evan Engram, a 6-3, 215-pound receiver, who UCLA is recruiting as a Y-receiver, though they haven't offered just yet. Engram did a good job of getting off the ball, catching the ball and showed decent speed. We wouldn't be surprised if UCLA offered Engram.
The best quarterback we saw on the day was Los Angeles (Calif.) Cathedral's Hayden Rettig. A four-star committed to LSU, Rettig looks like he's all the way back from the ACL injury that cost him much of his junior season. The ball just zips out of his hand and he's got really good spin and the ability to place it where only his receivers can catch it. He's got one of the stronger arms of any Western quarterback.
Stockton (Calif.) Lincoln quarterback Zack Greenlee has been one of the best quarterbacks we've seen this spring, and got his first offer last week, in fact, from Fresno State, off the heels of winning MVP honors at the Las Vegas Elite 11 Regional Tryout and earning an invitation to the Elite 11 Finals. Greenlee's team struggled to catch the ball, which led to their early exit from the tournament, but Greenlee continued to show off his accuracy and good decision making that has made him one of the best prospects in NorCal.
Los Angeles (Calif.) Dorsey quarterback Reginald Bell, a Tulane commit, had a good day, and was also a big part of why GameChangers won the tournament. He's got good length, but could serve to add some more weight. He throws a really nice ball and was really consistent in the short and intermediate routes.
Other prospects who stood out include Fontana (Calif.) Summit cornerback Charles Okonkwo and safety Justin Strong, La Puente (Calif.) Bishop Amat cornerback Darren Andrews, Los Angeles (Calif.) Crenshaw athlete Max Lyons, Murrieta (Calif.) Vista Murrieta 2014 outside linebacker Tyler Cook and Elk Grove (Calif.) Pleasant Grove running back Isaiah Saunders.Team Georgia lost in the afternoon's bracket portion, and quickly headed out to board a plan back to Georgia.
UCLA Head Coach Jim Mora watched only the morning portion Sunday, having to head out to attend a fundraiser in Washington.