Recruiting Buzz Word

Not only does Josh Rosen announce his decision today, but we have so much more recruiting news, like on Rasheem Green, Marvell Tell, Dechaun Holiday, Texas recruits and an elite prospect that like UCLA...

UCLA isn't having one big Junior Day, but a number of smaller, more-intimate, meet-and-greet days. We've heard that a number of recruits will be on campus for one of these April 4th, the first Saturday of spring practice.


An elite national prospect that isn't even listing UCLA publicly has shown the UCLA program a great deal of attention. He hasn't verbally committed but UCLA and this prospect have been talking very seriously about him coming to UCLA.

This is not the elite national prospect we referred to earlier that is a silent commitment.


An elite prospect was on campus Tuesday. He was seen in the UCLA Student Store buying some Bruin gear.


Canton Kaumatule
UCLA is doing very well with Canton Kaumatule, the 6-6, 250-pound defensive end from Honolulu (Haw.) Punahou. Taumatule, the five-star prospect who is ranked #24 nationally overall, has long been thought to be favoring Stanford, but we've heard repeatedly, and recently, that Taumatule won't be able to get into Stanford academically. UCLA's staff has a connection to Taumatule, and right now the leaders outside of Stanford are UCLA and USC.


Rasheem Green, the five star defensive lineman from Gardena Serra, was on UCLA's campus for an unofficial visit for four hours last Saturday. He visited with his mother, who is a UCLA alumna and, from what we've heard, practically conducted the campus visit for her son and the group of coaches that were accompanying them. There has been a rumor circulating that Green is an early USC lean, but we continue to hear that might be overblown, and with Green's mom being a Bruin alum UCLA definitely is a serious contender for him.


Kieffer Longson, the 6-7, 300-pound offensive line prospect from San Ramon (Calif.) Dougherty, visited UCLA last weekend and reportedly had a very good visit. We know UCLA, despite having not offered Longson yet, has been recruiting him aggressively and could be close to offering. Longson is interesting, being put together well physically, and also the fact that he intends to go on his LDS mission right out of high school. With UCLA having limited scholarships to give to 2015, Longson might be a good match since his commitment wouldn't count against 2015. When he returned from his mission he'd be a recruitable athlete but committing to UCLA now could give UCLA quite an edge it getting him two years later.


Christian Rector, the defensive end from Los Angeles Loyola, visited UCLA last weekend. There are quite a few UCLA connections to Rector, with UCLA running backs coach Kennedy Polamalu having coached at Loyola last season, and Jim Mora's son currently a freshman at Loyola. But we've also heard that USC is perhaps the leader for Rector.


From Greg Biggins: Ben Humphreys, the 6-3, 190-pound linebacker prospect from Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei, visited UCLA Friday and said he had a great time, and told us something interesting. He was told by UCLA coaches that the UCLA depth chart is pretty stacked with inside linebackers and they're looking for the next Anthony Barr-type frames to play outside linebacker. They want Humphreys to come to their camp in June and actually work out with the defensive ends to see what kind of pass rush he has. If he performs well, he was told he'll be offered as a LB, not a DL.


Taeon Mason
UCLA is now pursuing USC-committed Taeon Mason, the 6-0, 170-pound athlete from Pasadena (Calif.) Muir. UCLA Defensive Back Coach Demetrice Martin is from Muir and is recruiting Mason, who probably projects as a defensive back. Mason is raw but has very good speed, and we've heard that Mason is now considering UCLA.


UCLA continues to show a big recruiting presence in Louisiana.

Joe Anderson, the highest-rated linebacker prospect in the state of Louisiana for 2015, told Scout.com he intended to contact UCLA yesterday afternoon. Anderson, the 6-3, 200-pound athlete from Reserve (La.) Riverside Academy, hasn't been recruited much by LSU, but has offers from Florida, Tennessee, South Carolina, Tulane and Ole Miss, while Florida State and Mississippi State are showing interest. He attended Mississippi State's junior day and it's thought that Florida is the probable leader.

UCLA recently offered WR/CB C.J. Morgan from Bossier City (La.) Parkway, to go along with offers from Mississippi State, San Diego State and Louisiana-Lafayette, and California could be the next to offer.


Marvell Tell, the #1-ranked safety from Encino (Calif.) Crespi, told us that UCLA is recruiting him the hardest along with USC and Washington State, and he's planning on visiting UCLA in the next two weeks.


Dechaun Holiday is holding steady as one of UCLA's top defensive back targets for 2015. The 6-2, 190-pounder from San Marcos (Calif.) Mission Hills is thought to have UCLA as his leader, and the Bruins got a step ahead since they offered early and have been recruiting him aggressively. Holiday, though, is starting to get quite a bit of attention, with some big recent offers, most noteably one from Oregon last week. It's going to be a matter of UCLA trying to hold on to Holiday as he continues to get attention from other big-time programs.

***Here's the thing about UCLA defensive back recruiting for 2015: The Bruins only need two guys, and they're doing really well with many prospects and the west coast DB class is deep. Since there is so much talent available, this isn't a case where UCLA is going to wait until Signing Day for its two defensive back commitments. If prospects like Holiday and Stanley Norman, the 5-10 cornerback from Gardena Serra, who are thought to be leaning to UCLA, decide to hold out too long there might not be a spot available.


UCLA is continuing to hit Texas hard in recruiting, and is pursuing five-star cornerback prospect Kendall Sheffield, the 6-0, 180-pounder from Missouri City (Tex.). Sheffield is the #2-ranked corner in the country and reportedly blazing fast. UCLA is also recruiting James Locke, the 5-11, 180-pound cornerback prospect from Beaumont (Tex.) Central Senior. Both Sheffield and Locke have UCLA offers and there has been some talk that both could visit this summer. If either do that's a pretty good sign of serious interest on their part.


Jihree Stewart
Jihree Stewart, the 6-0, 175-pound cornerback prospect from Corona (Calif.) Centennial, is starting to emerge as potentially an elite prospect. He just got a big offer from Oregon, and has offers from Oregon State, Colorado, Vanderbilt, Boise State and Fresno State, but getting the Duck offer is the break-through offer. UCLA has been showing some serious interest, with Stewart telling us he had a 45-minute conversation with Demetrice Martin on Saturday. He was told the UCLA coaches would look at his film this week and could offer.


Jackson Perry, the 6-2, 275-pound DL/OL from Las Vegas Bishop Gorman, is a guy to watch, and UCLA is showing interest. With limited scholarships it's a question if UCLA offers this spring, but when the Evaluation Period starts April 15th, Bishop Gorman will be one of the first stops for the UCLA coaches since UCLA-committed tight end Alize Jones and wide receiver target Cordell Broadus are there, so UCLA coaches will definitely get to see Perry.


Bolu Olorunfunmi, the running back from Fresno (Calif.) Clovis West, verbally committed to UCLA last week. He had just received an offer from USC, and then Thursday received a Stanford offer. From what we've heard, though, Olorunfunmi contacted UCLA running backs coach Kennedy Polamalu after getting the Stanford offer to say he's still very solidly committed to UCLA.


It's pretty much a slam dunk that Bellflower St. John Bosco quarterback Josh Rosen will commit to UCLA at his press conference Thursday.


In fact, we could see Broadus perhaps considering committing to UCLA after Rosen announces. Broadus is close with Rosen and we've heard Rosen playing at UCLA is a big influence on him.


Interesting note: USC scheduled some of its camps on the same day as UCLA's camps in June. UCLA had already announced their camp dates and recently USC announced theirs, with the UCLA Elite Camp and USC's one-day camp now both on June 25th. It's definitely a direct challenge by USC to see which side of town many recruits will choose.


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