Prospect Preview: Week One

The prep football season fully gets going around the country this weekend and several of UCLA's commits and targets are slated for big games to start the season...

Game of the Week: #7 Bellevue (Wash.) vs. #21 Euless (Texas) Trinity on Thursday
One of the biggest matchups in the country will feature one of UCLA's commits, linebacker Myles Jack, in an interstate matchup between the top program in the Pacific Northwest (and the school that UCLA coach Jim Mora's son used to attend), against one of the premier programs in the Lone Star State.  While the Wolverines feature Jack as their defensive stalwart, and also a major contributor on offense, he's not the only UCLA target on the Wolverines.  Junior athlete Budda Baker already has a UCLA offer, and he's one of the most electric players out West in the 2014 class, playing safety, corner and running back, as well as returning kicks and punts (he had four kickoff returns for touchdowns last year).  UCLA had a couple of commits from Euless Trinity last year that ultimately signed elsewhere, but they have a couple of other Pac-12 commits on the roster this fall.

Santa Margarita (Calif.) at Long Beach Jordan
The Eagles of Santa Margarita are loaded and have already had six players commit to BCS schools, including a UCLA commit in Erik Bunte, the four-star offensive tackle who picked the Bruins back in the spring. The Eagles, who beat Phoenix Brophy Prep last week in their opener, also features UCLA recruit Riley Sorenson. Jordan is home to one of UCLA's primary skill position targets in four-star receiver John Ross, but Jordan will have their hands full against the top team in Southern California.

Redlands vs. Fontana Summit on Thursday
Redlands, led by UCLA verbal Craig Lee at running back and recruit Walter Jones, a cornerback/receiver, will again face a pretty stout defense, after opening with Rancho Cucamonga.  Summit won a CIF-SS title last year, and features a pair of top defensive backs in Charles Okonkwo and Justin Strong, both who are UCLA's watch list for this fall.

Westlake Village Oaks Christian at Granite Bay
Oaks Christian went on the road for a big test last week against Loomis (Calif.) Del Oro and responded with a 40-0 win.  This week, they'll be back in the Southland, playing in the second game of the Battle for Veterans Invitational at Westlake HS, against Granite Bay, who lost to Westlake last week.  The Lions are led on defense by UCLA commit Cameron Judge at linebacker.  The Semper Fidelis All-American had a sack and a fumble recovery for a touchdown in Oaks' shutout win.  The Lions also feature three key underclassmen on the offense, 2014 quarterback Brandon Dawkins, the State Sophomore of the Year last season, 2015 offensive lineman Reno Rosene and 2015 receiver Darick Holmes, who has a UCLA offer.  Granite Bay has a linebacker that is worth watching in Beau Hershberger.

La Mirada vs. La Habra on Thursday
La Mirada won their opener last week against Santa Fe Springs St. Paul but faces a big test in neighboring nemesis, La Habra.  While Aaron Porter is no longer with the Highlanders, they're still one of the top programs in the Southland.  La Mirada on the other hand, no longer has DERF18 playing for them, which has allowed their defense and offense to emerge, and they boast underclass prospects Tyler Luatua (2014) and 2015 quarterback Kevin Dillman, who both have UCLA offers.

Orange Lutheran vs. La Verne Damien
Featuring UCLA commit John Lopez on the offensive line, the Lancers take on Damien, who has sleeper receiver Josh Savage, who was one of the better pass-catchers we saw in the spring.

Los Angeles Salesian vs. Hacienda Heights Los Altos
UCLA verbal Jermaine Kelly stars at both receiver and cornerback for Salesian.  He'll have quarterback Jihad Vercher trying to get him the ball.  Salesian also has a pair of 2014 studs in athlete Marquis Ware, who UCLA has offered as well as athlete Jamardre Cobb.

Sherman Oaks Notre Dame vs. Chandler (Ariz.) Hamilton in Dublin, Ireland
An intriguing matchup of two traditionally strong programs has Notre Dame squad that lost a heartbreaker in the opener to Serra, going to Ireland to take on one of the top teams in Arizona.  Notre Dame has UCLA offered running back Khalfani Muhammad as well as quarterback Kelly Hilinski while Hamilton has UCLA offered cornerback Cole Luke.

Encino Crespi vs. Henderson (Nev.) Liberty
This interstate game features one of UCLA's chief targets on defense, safety Tyler Foreman from Crespi, as well as another two players that UCLA is watching in safety Brandon Arnold and defensive end Ray Davision.  

Fresno Central vs. Bakersfield Liberty
The vaunted Fresno Central secondary will be without UCLA target Johnny Johnson again, as he's sitting out the first two games because of a transfer last season, but the Tigers will feature another UCLA target in L.J. Moore at corner and Hatari Byrd, who committed to Oklahoma, but whom UCLA hasn't given up on, at safety.  The Tigers also feature a 2014 prospect with a UCLA offer, receiver Michiah Quick and three other underclassmen they're watching closely, safety Devon Brewer, defensive lineman Tashon Smallwood and running back Nick Wilson.  Liberty's top prospect is former UCLA commit Cole Mazza, the long snapper who flipped to Alabama.

Tempe (Ariz.) Marcos de Niza at Scottsdale (Ariz.) Chaparral
Chaparral is led by senior wide receiver Jake Roh, who holds offers from Arizona, Duke, and Oregon State, and he also has a good deal of interest in UCLA, though he's not been offered. Arizona's No. 1 prospect in the Class of 2013, defensive back Priest Willis, is the headliner for Marcos de Niza and he's one of UCLA's top targets.

Marrieta (Ga.) Lassiter vs. Powder Springs (Ga.) Hillgrove
UCLA's committed quarterback, Eddie Printz, will make his season debut against Hillgrove, which features Evan Engram, who was one of Printz's top targets this spring and summer on the 7on7 circuit for Team Georgia, and had a nice showing at UCLA's 7on7 tournament before committing to Ole Miss. 

Corona (Calif.) Centennial at Ventura (Calif.) St. Bonaventure on FSN Prime Ticket at 10 p.m. (delayed)
 Corona Centennial is stacked with talent, especially on the offensive and defensive line with Cal commit Cameron Hunt, who UCLA just recently offered, 2014 lineman Viane Talamaivao, who has a UCLA offer, and defensive lineman Garrett Hughes. All three players have Pac-12 level talent. Wide receiver Ryan Pascarella and linebacker Jaycie Pearson are also impressive prospects.  St. Bonaventure features Arizona commit Zachary Green in their backfield.

Other UCLA Commits in Action
Memphis (Tenn.) East offensive tackle Christian Morris and his squad look for their first win of the season when they take on rival Memphis Central in their third game of the season.  Rialto (Calif.) Carter defensive tackle Kenneth Clark starts this week against Ontario (Calif.) Chaffey.  Fallbrook (Calif.) offensive tackle Sean Dowling gets going this week against Spring Valley (Calif.) Mount Miguel. 

UCLA Commits Starting Next Week
Missouri City (Texas) Marshall linebacker Deon Hollins will start his season next week against Houston (Texas) Chavez.

 

Brandon is in his eighth year with FOX Sports NEXT, currently as a National Recruiting Analyst and West Regional Manager. Prior to joining the FOX Sports NEXT Recruiting Team, he was a team recruiting writer.  He's been covering recruiting for the FOX Sports NEXT network since 2003.
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