Tuesday Morning Buzz Word
-- UCLA Head Coach Jim Mora and Quarterbacks Coach Taylor Mazzone had an in-home visit with Aaron Sharp, the quarterback from Houston (Tex.) Summer Creek, Monday night, and the athletic prospect told the UCLA coaches he wanted to be a Bruin. It was one day after his official visit to UCLA over the weekend. Sharp had been verbally committed to Kansas State, but KSU pulled its offer when Sharp visited UCLA. Sharp had plans to visit Washington this coming weekend, and we've heard it's uncertain at this point if he'll take that visit.
It's a key get for UCLA. We've always maintained that UCLA needed a quarterback in the 2014 class, to keep a supply of talent and depth at the quarterback position, and give UCLA another chance at finding its starting quarterback when Brett Hundley leaves after next season. Sharp doesn't have a picture-perfect motion but has a strong arm, throwing for over 9,000 yards and 93 touchdowns in his career, and he's very athletic and matches the version of the offense UCLA employs for Hundley.
-- UCLA assistant coach Adrian Klemm will be in Texas to see five-star defensive end Solomon Thomas Tuesday. Thomas released his final three schools Monday -- UCLA, Stanford and Arkansas, eliminating Ohio State and Texas. He visited UCLA in December, Stanford on Jan. 10th and Arkansas last weekend. He was supposed to visit Ohio State on Jan. 24th. UCLA was doing well in December after his UCLA official visit, and there were some close to the recruitment that thought the Bruins had ovetaken the long-time favorite, Stanford. But the Cardinal academically accepted Thomas on his official visit to Stanford and the word is that they are clearly the leader.
-- Budda Baker, the DB/WR from Bellevue (Wash.), released Monday that he'll visit UCLA this coming weekend. UCLA Coach Jim Mora and Defensive Backs Coach Demetrice Martin were in Washington Monday to visit him and his mother, right before he made the announcement about the visit on Twitter. He visited Washington last weekend, and it's believed he still plans to visit USC, but as of right now, the word is that the Bruins are the ones to beat at this point. Baker also said he'll wait until National Signing Day to announce.
-- There is a slight ray of light in UCLA's recruitment of Damien Mama, the #1 offensive guard in the country from Bellflower St. John Bosco. He's made indications that USC was a strong leader for him, and we still believe it, but lately we've also been hearing that UCLA is starting to get some traction with him. Adrian Klemm had an in-home visit with Mama last week that reportedly went really well. There is some buzz around St. John Bosco, too, that UCLA's chances are improving. Klemm has another in-home visit scheduled with Mama for Monday, the day after his official USC visit this weekend. He then also will visit BYU on Jan. 31st. Mama also intends to unofficially visit UCLA sometime in the two weeks before the dead period (which starts Monday, the 3rd, two days before National Signing Day on Wednesday, the 5th).
-- UCLA running backs coach Kennedy Polamalu had a tentative in-home visit scheduled with Joe Mixon for Tuesday, but it's not certain if the visit will happen. A source close to Mixon said he was possibly going to talk to Mora about it Monday, but we are uncertain if that phone call took place. Mixon did tweet this Monday, though: "Can Everyone Stop With The Rumors Saying I'm Going To UCLA On The 30th. I'm Committed To OU and There is Nothing gunna change That. #Thanks." We've heard that UCLA isn't holding out too much hope for Mixon at this point. Updated 7:17 a.m.: Polamalu is scheduled to go by Mixon's high school, Oakley Freedom.
-- Mora will be in Auburn, Ala., today with linebackers coach Jeff Ulbrich for an in-home visit with Rashaan Evans, the #1 outside linebacker in the nation.
-- We've also heard that a "surprise" recruit has reached out to UCLA and arranged for an in-home visit with the UCLA coaches. In fact, UCLA coaches are expected to visit with a second surprise recruit also. And Mora might happen to be along for those in-home visits. Did you notice we didn't specify what day these visits might occur? If we did, many BROs might go into detective mode to find out who the recruits could be, and if it were public at this point, it could hurt UCLA's recruitment of the prospects. We would guess the in-home visits will be made public fairly soon.
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