Mar. 5 -- Gardena (Calif.) Serra athlete Brandon Burton took a visit to UCLA and said the Bruins have a real shot for him right now.
The past few years, the program at Serra has been considered almost a farm system for USC
. Brandon Burton
has heard the rumors as well and knows people are calling him a lock for the Trojans, simply because he has an offer from them.
"That kind of bothered me at first because I felt like it was hurting my recruitment a little," Burton said. "I'm honestly open to everyone and will pick the best school for me, not just a school that some of my teammates have gone to. I'm my own person and do what is best for me and where I'm most comfortable."
|Burton in the UCLA football offices.|
On Wednesday, Burton took a visit to UCLA
and said he enjoyed his time in Westwood.
"The trip went great," Burton said. "I toured the campus, talked with the academic advisers and spent a lot of time with the coaches. That was probably the best part, just talking with those guys and trying to build that relationship.
"There were no hard sells or trying to pressure me about anything. The coaches were very honest and straight forward but said they really need me and would love to have me. The whole staff was there, Coach (Jim) Mora, Yarbs (Eric Yarber), Meat (Demetrice Martin), Angus (McClure) and (Tom) Bradley, and I felt very comfortable with all of them."
Burton said he has visited UCLA before and watched practice but today was a little different.
"Today just felt more relaxed and I got a better feel for the school," Burton said. "It was the first time I really spent time talking with Coach Mora and I really liked him a lot. He's so genuine and down to earth. He's a real cool guy and I'm looking forward to building that relationship with him moving forward.
"Coach Meat, that's my guy, he has been recruiting me for a long time. He's always telling me how well I would fit in there and how much he likes me as a safety. Yarbs said he wants me at receiver so UCLA is basically recruiting me as an athlete and said I could play both ways for them.
"UCLA is a good program, they're on the rise right now and have gotten better every year since Mora has been there. I feel at home there, it's a family environment and the coaches are very genuine with me so I'm definitely giving them a hard look."
Burton said he's close to cutting his list down to a final 5-7 schools.
"I'll be doing that real soon," Burton said. "UCLA will definitely be on that list and I'm still sorting out the rest of the schools. I have some more visits I'm planning to take. I'm going to Oklahoma
later in the month and I'm going to visit Arizona State
"I also plan to get out to Florida State
but I don't have any set dates with those schools yet. As for a final decision, I'm not going to rush it but I won't hold it off if I know where I want to go either. I want to see some more schools and once I'm comfortable with a school, I'll go ahead and pull the trigger."