Jaleel Wadood Growing Comfortable at Safety

Apr. 7 -- Heading into his third season, UCLA safety Jaleel Wadood has assumed a bigger leadership role in the secondary...

Jaleel Wadood had yet to turn 20 but he already considers himself a veteran of the UCLA defense after starting his first two seasons.

With Ishmael Adams moving to offense and Fabian Moreau sidelined this spring, Wadood has assumed a bigger leadership role in the secondary through the first five practices. Find out what the rising junior had to say Wednesday in the video below:

On spring ball so far:

It’s been going good, we’re practicing hard, offense and defense, everyone flying around.  Been a good spring.

On any defensive tweaks:

Not really, just gelling together.  Some new calls, but really about camaraderie.

On Ish Adams moving to offense:

It kind of sucks, but he’s looking good on offense so its helping the team.  We’re teammates and he’s helping that side of the ball.

On what he’s trying to improve on:

There are so many things I can learn. I don’t think I’m perfect yet, but want to get better at everything.

On having experience on both sides:

It helps when I see receivers split, just experience from when I played on that side of the ball.  

On if he’s more comfortable at safety:

Yeah, it feels way different from my freshman year, it seems like I just got here. It helps being here for a certain amount of years.  Knowing my teammates and how I can play off them.

On being an upperclassmen:

It kind of feels weird, everyone calling me an upperclassmen, because I’m still 19, but I take on the leader role.  Its pretty cool.  

On being a leader:

I like to lead by example.  We can do it all together, as long as we play together, there is nothing we can’t accomplish.

On playing with Josh Rosen again:

It feels like high school all over. He knows tendencies I have, I know tendencies he has.  We bring out the best in each other.


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