Tom Bradley Leading Candidate for DC

Feb. 18 -- It appears that Jim Mora and UCLA are on the verge of hiring Tom Bradley, the proven veteran coach, as UCLA's new defensive coordinator. Bradley was known for being one of the best DCs in college football while at Penn State...

Veteran college coach Tom Bradley is the clear frontrunner to be the new UCLA Defensive Coordinator, according to sources.

Bradley, 57, has been the Assistant Head Coach and Defensive Line Coach at West Virginia for a season, before spending 36 years coaching at Penn State in various capacities, including defensive coordinator for 10 seasons. He was interim head coach after Joe Paterno was dismissed four games into the 2011 season.

Sources are telling us that UCLA Head Coach Jim Mora has actually submitted Bradley's name for vetting and approval by the UCLA administration. It still isn't final, therefore, and Mora could still reconsider, but it's looking very likely Bradley will be UCLA's next defensive coordinator.

Bradley while interim head coach at Penn State.
Bradley was Penn State's Defensive Coordinator from 2000 to 2011, when he was credited with being the architect of one of the best defenses in college football over that span.

For a seven-year period, from 2004 to 2011, Bradley had Penn State's defense ranked third in the nation in scoring defense (16.4 PPG) and fifth in total defense (298.7 YPG). In 2009, the Nittany Lions were considered the most dominant defense in college football, ranking in the top 15 nationally in six categories for the season.

Bradly was named the AP National Defensive Coordinator of the Year in 2005, and the Rivals Defensive Coordinator of the Year in 2008. He was consistently on the list of many rankings of college football's best defensive coordinators while at Penn State.

Bradley played his own college football in State College, his association with PSU spanning 40 years.

Bradley is a native of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, and was inducted into the Western Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame in 2014.

Mora interviewed a number of candidates but, as Bruin Report Online reported, had narrowed it down to three finalists by the beginning of this week.

Mora considered Bradley a year ago for the open defensive coordinator position when Lou Spanos left for the NFL, but promoted then-linebackers coach Jeff Ulbrich. Bradley had previously been out of a job for two years, in the aftermath of the Jerry Sandusky scandal.

In fact, sources have told us that vetting Bradley because of his association with Penn State is the reason the official hiring has taken some time. It's still, according to sources, under the scrutiny of Chancellor Block, and the submission could be rescinded at anytime by Mora. But a source close to the situation said, "It's pretty far down the line that it's Bradley."

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