Movers and Shakers in Scout 300
Scout finalized the Scout 300 for the 2016 class and one more prospect from the West moved up to a five-star.
After a great senior season, Westlake Village (Calif.) Oaks Christian athlete Michael Pittman was in prime position to make a move for that coveted fifth star.
Going in to the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, the plan was to see how the USC commit looked at the practices as he competed against other elite athletes.
Before injuring his shoulder on the third day, Pittman was arguably the best receiver on the West squad. When you look at his size, underrated speed, improved pass catching and toughness, he definitely earned the ratings bump he received.
There were only a few minor tweaks in the West with North Torrance (Calif.) linebacker Mique Juarez moving up a spot to No. 2 overall prospect in the region, behind Lake Stevens (Wash.) quarterback Jacob Eason, and No. 8 nationally.
After a great week during Army practices, Long Beach (Calif.) Poly athlete Jack Jones saw a little bump in his ranking and is now the No. 1 athlete in the country.
The biggest mover in the 300 was Salt Lake City (Utah) Brighton receiver Simi Fehoko. The Stanford commit moved from No. 230 nationally up to No. 123. Fehoko put up video game numbers this past season, breaking state records for career touchdowns and yards. He showed during the Army All-American practices he could compete with anyone, flashing dynamic speed, soft hands and the ability to run after the catch.
The one player rejoining the Scout 300 was a player who was recently bumped out. Chandler (Ariz.) athlete Chase Lucas was hurt and missed half of his senior season. You never want to punish a player for not playing but with Lucas, we were not sure exactly what position he fit best, and how his overall athletic ability translated to college. He more than proved himself all week during the Army practices and was one of the best corners in the event. The Arizona State commit is now back in the 300 at No. 292.
A Good Week for the Huskies
But the Huskies had no reason to worry after the trip, with Love saying he enjoyed the trip, but solidifying his commitment to the Huskies.
"I've never wavered honestly," Love told Dawgman.com. "I've always known where I wanted to go, but I also felt like I should at least see what else is out there for me and my parents were encouraging me to take this visit just to make sure.
This weekend, Love will be joined by two fellow Scout 300 commits to the Huskies on his official visit to Washington, Oakland (Calif.) Bishop O'Dowd four-star linebacker Camilo Eifler and Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco four-star running back Sean McGrew.
That kicked off a good week for the Huskies, who also landed a pair of four-star athletes ranked in the Scout 300.
On Wednesday, Allen (Texas) defensive end Levi Onwuzurike announced for the Dawgs and in somewhat of a surprise, Scottsdale (Ariz.) Saguaro athlete Byron Murphy chose the Huskies over the hometown Sun Devils.
Onwuzurike is a big, powerful rush end with a lot of upside. He's rated the No. 101 player in the country and physically, has the size and toughness to step in and play early next fall.
Murphy could play receiver, corner or safety in college but will get first crack at corner. With two other close friends heading to ASU, many felt he would join them but credit Husky DB Coach Jimmy Lake who has clearly established himself as one of the top recruiters out West, regardless of position.
We think Murphy has a shot to play early as well. He's a highly skilled athlete with great football instincts and ball skills. He has a strong corner body and is very good in press coverage and in run support.
UCLA Lands Pair of Former Arizona Verbals
It wasn't all bad for the Bruins, though, who landed commitments from two former Arizona commits.
Las Flores (Calif.) Tesoro quarterback Devon Modster was a longtime Wildcat commit but then in a surprise, decommitted from Arizona on New Year's Eve.
He chose Arizona over UCLA when he committed in the spring, but with new quarterbacks coach Marques Tuiasosopo, the Bruins moved fast on Modster upon his hiring and had Modster in for an official visit over the weekend.
The four-star then committed to the Bruins on Monday.
El Cajon (Calif.) Granite Hills defensive end Jake Burton committed to the Wildcats in the summer, despite an offer from the Bruins just before he picked Arizona.
On Monday night, Burton flipped to the Bruins, giving UCLA a pair of verbals to start the week.
UCLA Moves to Top
With a handful of prospects decommitting in the last couple of week, Stanford's spot at the top has been dinged a bit, while UCLA added Modster and Burton this week to move to the top of the Pac-12 rankings.
1. UCLA (13)
2. Stanford (16)
3. Oregon (18)
4. USC (19)
5. Arizona State (24)
6. Washington (29)
Visits to Watch
Almost 20 visitors will be in Berkeley, a number of them commits to Cal, with Starkville (Miss.) receiver A.J. Brown, the No. 5 receiver nationally, and three-star cornerback Terrell Burgess from San Marcos (Calif.) the top uncommitted visitors in town.
Utah has almost 10 visitors coming in for official visits, including three players committed to archrival BYU, Spanish Fork (Utah) Maple Mountain quarterback Jaren Hall, Bountiful (Utah) safety Max Tooley and Snow (Utah) College receiver Jonah Trinnaman.
While they're hosting three BYU verbals, the Utes will also be keeping an eye on USC, where two of their commits are visiting officially, Herriman (Utah) defensive end Leki Fotu and Lawndale (Calif.) Leuzinger defensive end Semisi Lauaki.
UCLA will host Jake Raulerson, the graduated offensive lineman from Texas, who will have two years of eligibility left, before Raulerson visits Oregon the final weekend before Signing Day.
Pac-12 Recruiting News and Notes
-Oregon State picked up a verbal from Miami (Fla.) Central defensive end Kenny Turnier over the weekend.
-Etiwanda (Calif.) athlete Kamari Pleasant backed off his pledge to Arizona State and now Washington is the favorite for the three-star.
-Independence (Ore.) Central defensive tackle Marlon Tuipulotu will be one of the top 2017 defensive linemen in the West, and California and Utah both offered him this week.