Aaron Hansford, the top athlete in Washington, D.C., was looking forward to his first visit to California because of the stories he heard, but bonding with the coaching staff was tops on his to-do list.
"The academics are pretty prestigious," said Hansford, who attends St. John's College High. "It was really a great overall visit and UCLA is a viable option at this point. They offered me as a wide receiver. That is what I would be playing if I go there. It is similar to the position Thomas Duarte played last year."
This was Hansford's first chance to meet with offensive coordinator Kennedy Polamalu, and it went well.
"I got a great vibe with the coaching staff," Hansford said. "I talked with Kennedy Polamalu. He's a great coach and has a great vision for the future. He really has his stuff together. I think everyone is a good coach here and they have a good vision. It is a great place.
"It was really great seeing California in person, and the campus, Westwood, Hollywood, Beverly Hills, everything. That kind of blew my mind. I really wanted to see how the offensive coordinator was because I never met him until this visit. That would probably be my biggest takeaway from the visit, just meeting him and getting a feel for him and his coaches."
The discussions with the coaching staff was not limited to Polamalu. Hansford, who made the trip with his parents, met with coach Jim Mora, associate head coach Rip Scherer and receivers coach Eric Yarber.
"The visit went great." Hansford said. "I talked to basically everybody. It was a great experience. Josh Rosen was my host. He showed me some really great things about the campus -- the campus life and city life. Ya' know, L.A.'s a big city, and he wanted to give me a flavor of his own. He wanted to show me how life was there."
A big thing with Hansford is his college position.
Most schools began recruiting Hansford as an outside linebacker, but he he likes receiver as well and could lean that way in college. UCLA originally offered Hansford as a receiver, and that remains the focus for the Bruins.
"They said I could play all over," Hansford said. "They said I was more versatile than Thomas Duarte. They said based off my film, I can be a mismatch outside, play wide, wing back and everything."