Three-star defensive lineman sets SMU visit

One of California's top defensive prospects will be on the Hilltop this Friday for an unofficial visit

Oak Park (CA) defensive lineman Luca Bruno has only been in contact with SMU for a couple of weeks, but the three-star prospect will already be making a visit on Friday in order to learn more about the Dallas-based program.

"I'm very interested in SMU. Being from California, it has always been a dream of mine to play for a Texas school," Bruno said. "TCU has been showing interest, but SMU has been showing more recently. I'm starting to get really interested."

Bruno says he hopes to see players and coaches that have a passion for the sport he loves. As one of the most aggressive defensive ends in California, Bruno has a mean streak about him and is looking for a program that shares the same kind of attitude.

"I want to take a look at the school and see how intense their workouts are. The level of intensity they have and how the coaches work with the team is big," Bruno said. "I want to be able to play for an intense team with a good atmosphere. That's what I want the most in a college along with good academics and all that."

The 6-foot-4, 282-pounder is extremely versatile and can play both defensive end and nose tackle. Bruno explained that he doesn't exactly know where he can fit in with SMU at the moment but is glad he's developing a relationship with defensive line coach Bert Hill.

"I've been talking mostly to Coach Hill. We've been emailing back and forth. He seems really interested and wants to get to know me in person," Bruno said. "I think he's a really good defensive coach, and he seems like he really knows what he's talking about."

Bruno currently does not hold an SMU offer but if he were to receive one during his visit, SMU would immediately be penciled in on his short list.

"My favorites right now are Arizona and Oregon State," Bruno said. "If TCU came around and offered, they would probably be No. 1. If SMU offered, they would definitely be in the top four."

Last season, Bruno recorded an eye-popping 133 tackles, six sacks and four forced fumbles as he wrecked absolute havoc in opposing backfields. Despite the gaudy numbers, Bruno feels there is always room for improvement.

"I've been working on my agility and speed," he said. "Last year, I felt like I was lacking a little agility on the line so that's what I'm working hard on with lots of drills. My hand speed has improved. I'm just working on all this to improve on last year."

While in the metroplex, Bruno, who recently took part in USC's camp, was supposed to attend TCU's camp but will not because he doesn't want to ‘risk injury.' Instead, Bruno will focus solely on familiarizing himself with SMU.

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