This is a crucial year for UCLA coach Jim Mora and the Bruin football program.
Mora heads into his sixth year in Westwood, coming off the Bruins' worst season since 2010 and the least successful campaign under Mora.
Wholesale changes were made on the offensive staff, with a new offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach (Jedd Fisch) as well as new running backs coach (DeShaun Foster), receivers coach (Jimmie Dougherty) and offensive line coach (Hank Fraley). The edict is simple: produce on offense and recruit better.
UCLA's 2017 class was pretty solid, considering it was coming off a 4-8 season. But it was not great on the offensive side of the ball, and that follows since UCLA's offense in 2016 wasn't a great recruiting calling card. The new offense UCLA puts on the field of Fisch and Co. looks to change that for the 2018 class.
As of right now, though, the Bruins hold eight commitments in the 2018 class -- four on offense and four on defense.
Here's the reset we did on defensive prospects: UCLA Football Recruiting Reset: Defense
Here is a look at UCLA's offensive recruiting board as coaches hit the road this week for the spring evaluation period.
QUARTERBACKS (1 or 2)
UCLA could sign two quarterbacks this class but it could entirely depend on who they are. At the minimum, though, they needed one and got one in Dorian Thompson-Robinson. He said that UCLA told him they were just bringing in one quarterback in this class, but if someone like Tanner McKee wanted to come, they'd take him, since he wouldn't enroll until 2020.
Dorian Thompson-Robinson, Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman - COMMITTED
Thompson-Robinson made no bones about his interest in UCLA and the Bruins stayed on him in the transition from Marques Tuiasosopo, who offered him last summer, to Jedd Fisch, who recruited him when he was at Michigan. Thompson-Robinson already had an established relationship with Fisch so when he made the move to UCLA, it was a seamless transition, and perhaps enhanced that relationship even more. After racking up 30-plus offers, Thompson-Robinson committed to the Bruins in mid-April, the Bruins' highest rated prospect in this class and big win for Fisch, especially beating out Michigan and Jim Harbaugh. What makes Thompson-Robinson so intriguing is that he picked up over 30 offers despite not being the starter at Bishop Gorman. Backing up Tate Martell, he played quarterback in a limited role on Friday nights, but was active in hitting camps and 7v7 tournaments to show off his arm. There will be questions about how it translates to Fridays, especially since he's played sparingly, but the talent is there. He could end up even higher in the ratings when it's all said and done if he has a big year, because right now, he's rated based almost all on upside. But its clear his best football is ahead of him.
Tanner McKee, Corona (Calif.) Centennial
McKee had as good a season as any quarterback in the West did last fall in his first season as the starter for the Huskies. He's a big quarterback, at 6-6, but is pretty dangerous with his legs to go with his arm. He's attracted national attention and visited a number of schools during the spring, including UCLA. McKee would sign in February, but he won't enroll until the fall of 2020 since he's planning to serve his LDS mission right out of high school. That makes him an ideal second quarterback for UCLA to take -- it would let the coaches stagger their quarterbacks and still sign two big-time prospects. That said, UCLA will have their work cut out for them, since McKee is coveted by many. There is a lot of buzz for BYU too, given his LDS ties.
Other Names to Know:
Jamarye Joiner, 6-3, 200, Vail (Ariz.) Cienega
Jeff Miller, 6-6, 228, Murrieta (Calif.) Mesa
Hamish McClure, 6-0, 180, Encino (Calif.) Crespi
RUNNING BACKS (2)
UCLA didn't sign a running back in 2017 so new running backs coach DeShaun Foster would like to bring in at least two this class. Fortunately, the Bruins have offered a number of prospects, both locally and nationally, to improve their odds and pulled in one from outside the West already.
A.J. Carter, Many (La.) - COMMITTED
Carter was originally recruited by Foster when he was at Texas Tech and the relationship continued when Foster returned home to his alma mater. Carter visited in mid-April and committed to the Bruins on his trip. He has a handful of offers that he chose the Bruins over, including Arkansas, Arizona State, Missouri, Mississippi State and Texas Tech and there is some buzz that LSU could offer him before long. But Foster got on him early and it paid off.
Chris Brown, Oceanside (Calif.) El Camino
Brown starred at UCLA's Bruin Elite Camp last summer and was offered by Kennedy Polamalu. But when Polamalu was let go immediately after the season, communication had slowed down. That was fixed, though, in January, when Foster was hired. He immediately prioritized Brown and had him up for an unofficial visit in February. Scott White, who is from San Diego and recruits that area, and Foster met with Brown and made a big impression. Brown is a similar back to Foster -- a power back, between the tackles type -- and Foster made that comparison to Brown, which wasn't lost on him. The Bruins are doing well with Brown and while he still wants to take some time before deciding, they have a very good shot at the four-star and would love to get a commitment from him.
Demetrious Flowers, Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco
One of the early mysteries was the lack of recruiting attention being paid to Flowers. The four-star back certainly proved his value last fall, taking over for Sean McGrew for the Braves and helping lead them to the CIF State Open Division title. Flowers ended up landing his first offer from the Bruins and he's definitely feeling UCLA early on. He has a handful of other offers, but UCLA is one that made an impression on him and he told Scout that he plans to take an unofficial to campus to meet with DeShaun Foster. UCLA has done well at St. John Bosco and would love to build a long-term pipeline there, considering the success they've had there. We know that UCLA covets Flowers, and he'd be a good part of that pipeline.
Andrew Van Buren, West Hills (Calif.) Chaminade
Van Buren was offered by the Bruins in late February and it was an offer that he had hoped to get, being a Southland native. Van Buren was the backup running back at Chaminade last fall behind T.J. Pledger, who UCLA recruited but committed to Oklahoma, but with Pledger's move to IMG, Van Buren will be their primary back. His running back coach, who also coached Pledger, said the Eagles shouldn't skip a beat with Van Buren now their back, though he's a different style back than Pledger. Van Buren also likes Colorado and Boise State, both who've had success at Chaminade in the past. We think Van Buren is probably a second-tier guy behind Brown and Flowers, from the uncommitted crop.
Keaontay Ingram, Carthage (Texas)
UCLA was one of the earlier offers for Ingram, with Foster being well aware of him when he was at Texas Tech. But the top back in Texas has attracted all the in-state programs as well as national programs like LSU, Michigan and Ohio State among others, so UCLA appears to be on the next tier for Ingram. Foster, though, made it a priority to go see him this week.
Lentivone Lesane, Hialeah Gardens (Fla.) Mater Academy
Lesane is planning to visit UCLA this summer after being offered by the Bruins earlier in the spring and has already developed a good relationship with DeShaun Foster. Lesane also has an offer from Utah out of the Pac-12 but is hoping for some offers from the South where he's from. Lesane is also a track star and plans to do both in college.
Lavonte Valentine, Melbourne (Fla.) Central Catholic
Valentine is another speedster out of Florida but he does have offers from some SEC programs, like Florida and LSU and the Gators have already had him on campus for an unofficial visit which left a big impression on him. He may visit UCLA in the summer, but looks like, for now, he's focusing on Southern schools.
Next Tier to Watch:
Toa Taua, Lompoc (Calif,)
Taua is the younger brother of UCLA junior Ainuu Taua, but he's the smallest of the family and will play running back in college. Taua was the RB MVP at the L.A. Opening but, right now, UCLA isn't really recruiting him, while Cal is. Nevada is also on his short list, and his oldest brother, Vai, was one of the finest backs the Pack have ever had.
Maurice Washington, San Jose (Calif.) Oak Grove
Washington is an interesting prospect, with offers from schools like Georgia, LSU and USC, but all based on his sophomore film. He was ineligible his entire junior year because of a transfer from The Kings Academy, where he played for former Bruin offensive coordinator Mike Johnson, to Oak Grove, his home school. He may have some work to do in the classroom, though.
Other Names to Know:
Chuck Wick, 5-11, 180, Ventura (Calif.)
Jermar Jefferson, 5-11, 198, Harbor City (Calif.) Narbonne
Kirby Bennett, 5-9, 210, Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman
Richard Newton, 6-1, 185, Palmdate (Calif.)
After not signing a receiver in the 2017 class, UCLA made a change at the receivers coach position, bringing in Jimmie Dougherty as Eric Yarber left for the Los Angeles Rams. UCLA has been recruiting the receiver position in 2018, though, pretty aggressively, with Yarber before (he focused more on the 2018 class, which is deeper and more talented), and now with Dougherty. In fact, Dougherty offered a number of these receivers while he was at Oregon. So the pre-existing relationships are there. UCLA needs to sign at least three and, possibly four, from this class.
Kyle Philips, San Marcos (Calif.) -COMMITTED
Philips committed to UCLA as part of a big weekend for the Bruins, when they also landed Carter and Thompson-Robinson. The four-star has been outstanding all spring on a loaded 7v7 roster with a number of Scout 300 receivers. Many people thought Utah was in the driver's seat for him, since he's close friends with Utes' quarterback commit Jack Tuttle. But Dougherty did a tremendous job with Phillips and the Bruins landed a sure-handed receiver who has impressed the Scout staff every time they've seen him.
Amon-Ra St. Brown, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei
St. Brown is the No. 1 receiver in the country, but right now, UCLA has their work cut out for them, with Stanford, where his brother Osiris signed in February, and Notre Dame, where the oldest, Equanimeous, plays, standing out along with USC. UCLA didn't really put much effort into Equanimeous (understandably so at the time) or Osiris, and that has hurt the Bruins, but they got him on campus a couple of times during the spring and they're starting to make up some ground with the five-star. Thompson-Robinson told us St. Brown is one of the receivers he has his eyes on and their teams are set to face off during a highly anticipated matchup in Orange County this fall.
Jalen Hall, Long Beach (Calif.) Poly
Hall was first offered by UCLA three years ago before he started his freshman year at Hawkins. But USC has two of his former Hawkins teammates signed in the 2017 class, has a commitment from a 2018 teammate and a 2019 teammate. Hall is far more open to UCLA than Joseph Lewis was, but UCLA still is likely on the outside looking in for him. He just transferred to Poly, too, where he's now teaming up with USC quarterback commit Matt Corral.
Chase Cota, Medford (Ore.) South
Cota on the other hand, is high on UCLA's board, with Dougherty building that relationship with him early on in his time at Oregon, and Cota visited last month and loved his visit. He's got a number of Pac-12 offers and Notre Dame got in the mix last month and had him for an unofficial visit. Cota has visited UCLA three times this spring and the relationship with Dougherty and with Mora has been a key part of their recruitment. His father played at Oregon, so the Ducks are going to be hard to beat, but he also played for Mora's father in Indianapolis, so that gives the Bruins some hope.
Devon Cooley, Buena Park (Calif.)
Cooley is one of the receivers that UCLA is doing the best with and their offer to him last summer left a big impression. Cooley was one of the standouts at the UCLA Elite Camp in June, after starting with the younger group and then being moved to the main group. Yarber offered him after that camp and Demetrice Martin went to watch him in the fall when seeing Elijah Gates. Cooley also picked up an offer from Oregon when Dougherty was there and his move to UCLA only helped the Bruins and Cooley has said on numerous occasions, UCLA is one of his favorites. The Bruins would love an early commitment from the four-star.
Devon Williams, Lancaster (Calif.) Antelope Valley
Williams has been one of the standouts this spring after being a bit overshadowed last fall by teammates Moses Robinson-Carr and Morrell Osling. Those teammates, though, both signed with UCLA, and the Bruins were one of the first schools to offer Williams and that left a huge impression on him. So, too, did his teammates signing with the Bruins. Throw in that his head coach, Jermaine Lewis, is a former Bruin running back, who split time in the backfield with current Bruin running backs coach Deshaun Foster, and UCLA has a lot of ties to Williams. All that said, on their own, the Bruins are doing well with Williams, but he's starting to blow up nationally (Alabama and Florida State have offered), so he'll likely go through the process.
Khalil Shakir, Murrieta (Calif.) Vista Murrieta
Shakir has been another true standout this spring, shining at just about every event we've seen him. UCLA was a big offer for him and one he coveted and UCLA is one of his two favorites (along with Arizona State and Arizona). He plays for ProWay, which is coached by Darick Holmes, the father of UCLA freshman Darnay Holmes. The addition of Phillips does give UCLA one of their smaller, quicker receivers, but Shakir is a talent they would still take if he wants to come.
Nikko Remigio, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei
Remigio was offered shortly by Eric Yarber after the Bruin Elite Camp and UCLA has stayed on his short list, but its uncertain how aggressively the Bruins will be recruiting him, with Phillips already committed and UCLA wanting Shakir a bit more.
Isaah Crocker, Sacramento (Calif.) Inderkum
Crocker has emerged as one of the top prospects in Northern California, with offers from all over, including USC and Notre Dame. His teammate and close friend, Josh Falo, signed with USC earlier this spring, but Crocker has said that UCLA was one of his top schools. The school to watch for, though, is Cal, which is close to home and his childhood favorite. He recently named his top eight and UCLA was included on it. He visited UCLA last weekend for the Spring Game, his second time on campus. Crocker will decide in the fall.
Solomon Enis, Phoenix (Ariz.) North Canyon
Enis was offered by UCLA in the fall after Bruin coaches went to see him play. And there is a connection with Enis too on the Bruin staff. His father, Curtis Enis, was an All-American running back at Penn State, when Tom Bradley was an assistant for the Nittany Lions. He's visited unofficially already this spring. The Nittany Lions, though, are a school he's strongly considering and he also likes Arizona State and USC quite a bit. Bradley made it a point, though, to see Enis right away, stopping in Phoenix on Monday to check in on him.
Andre Hunt, Lancaster (Calif.) Paraclete
Hunt was offered early in the cycle by UCLA but they haven't spent as much time on him as others and Hunt is favoring USC as it is, so don't be surprised if UCLA continues to focus on others.
Miles Battle, Houston (Texas) Cypress Creek
Battle has UCLA on his short list, along with Oregon, Oklahoma State, Ole Miss and LSU, but the Bruins are trying with him. They're expected to see him this month when they do another swing through Texas.
Next Tier to Watch:
Jalen Nailor, Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman
Nailor was a player we've liked all spring and one we liked last summer at UCLA's Elite Camp, when he camped with his Gorman teammates, Thompson-Robinson and Brevin Jordan. With offers out to a number of other receivers, though, it may be unlikely one makes its way to Nailor.
J.R. Justice, San Diego (Calif.) St. Augustine
Justice also shined at UCLA's camp last summer, but the Bruins have yet to offer. Much of it is because of uncertainty where he projects at the next level. They'll keep an eye on him and he's still interested in the Bruins despite no offer.
Tuni Fifita, Milpitas (Calif.)
Fifita plays for Maurice Jones-Drew's 7v7 team and is a player on UCLA's radar, but with bigger receivers like Michael Ezekie on their list, Fifita may be out because of numbers.
Other Names to Know:
Daniel Arias, 6-4, 190, Mill Creek (Wash.) Jackson
John Jackson, 6-2, 200, Gardena (Calif.) Serra
Kenden Robinson, 6-3, 175, Alameda (Calif.)
TIGHT ENDS (1)
A year ago, UCLA needed tight ends badly. Then they signed Jimmy Jaggers and Moses Robinson-Carr and saw Caleb Wilson emerge as a legitimate starter type last season. And when Devin Asiasi announced he was transferring to UCLA (he'll more than likely sit out the 2017 season, depending on his appeal), the Bruins went from desperately needing tight ends to now having a surplus. They still will try to bring in at least one tight end in this class and another big receiver/Y type.
Michael Ezeike, Ontario (Calif.) Colony
Ezeike moved to tight end in the recent rankings and projects more there now, but he still could come in as a receiver rather than a true tight end, so if UCLA could get him, they'd be thrilled. Ezeike has been one of this spring's bright spots and when UCLA offered, he said it was a dream offer. He visited campus this spring and UCLA is in a good spot for him.
Camren McDonald, Long Beach (Calif.) Poly
McDonald was offered by UCLA over a year ago, but they haven't put much emphasis on him, especially with the emergence of Ezeike as their bigger receiver. They'd still take him if he wanted to come, but he's not given many indicators that UCLA is on his real short list, with USC considered the heavy favorite.
Mustapha Muhammad, Missouri City (Texas) Ridge Point
Muhammad camped with UCLA last summer but even then, it was clear Brevin Jordan was their priority and that probably wasn't lost on Muhammad, with the four-star mentioning the Bruins less and less of late.
Kyle Pitts, Warminster (Pa.) Archbishop Wood
Pitts has mentioned UCLA prominently, with Tom Bradley running point on his recruitment and Pitts said he wants to visit UCLA in the summer. But a number of Eastern and Atlantic schools are prioritizing Pitts a little more right now.
John Fitzpatrick, Atlanta (Ga.) Marista
Fitzpatrick is another prospect from the other side of the country UCLA is recruiting and he's expressed a desire to visit the school in the spring or summer, but many of the Southern schools have him higher on their board and he's reciprocated that interest more in that region.
George Takacs, Naples (Fla.) Gulf Coast
Takacs has a Bruin offer, but right now, he's focusing on Florida, Georgia, Notre Dame and Wisconsin.
Glenn Beal, River Ridge (La.) John Curtis Christian
Beal has expressed legitimate interest in UCLA and cited his friendship with Kenny Young, who played at John Curtis Christian, as a big reason why. He wants to visit Westwood this summer and check UCLA out. He's already visited Alabama and Ole Miss and LSU is on his list too. But he said he grew up with UCLA as one of his favorite schools so the Bruins have a realistic chance with him.
Next Tier to Watch:
Tae Le, Newport Beach (Calif.) Corona del Mar
Le was a player who we liked at UCLA's Elite Camp last summer and has looked good throughout the spring but he's undersized as a true tight end and isn't quite explosive enough as a receiver to be a priority recruit for the Bruins right now. That said, they'll keep watching him through the spring, summer and fall.
Other Names to Know:
Parks Gissinger, 6-4, 235, West Hills (Calif.) Chaminade
Jake Peters, 6-5, 220, Santa Margarita (Calif.)
R.J. Stone, 6-4, 225, San Jose (Calif.) Valley Christian
OFFENSIVE LINE (4+)
One of the biggest differences in recruiting between new offensive line coach Hank Fraley and former line coach Adrian Klemm has been how many more offers that Fraley has made than Klemm used to. Klemm would focus on a smaller group and recruit them more aggressively while Fraley has made more offers to cast a wider net. Both strategies could work- the development of said players is the key. So that said, there are far more offers out to linemen this year than in previous years, with the emphasis being on Western prospects as opposed to when Klemm would recruit a little more nationally. And the feedback on Fraley from recruits has been pretty positive, with players loving his long NFL career and experience in both college and in the pros. Now Fraley just needs to land a couple key linemen.
Blake McDonald (OT), Danville (Calif.) San Ramon Valley - COMMITTED
McDonald had an offer from the Bruins in February and took an unofficial visit to Westwood that month and loved his time there. A return visit to Westwood in April, when he took in a spring practice and met at length with Hank Fraley and Jim Mora, swung it in UCLA's direction and he committed to the Bruins on that visit. McDonald had an offer from nearby Cal, but said UCLA was always his dream school and the Bruins won out over the hometown school.
Justin Dedich (C), Temecula (Calif.) Chaparral
Dedich was offered by Klemm last summer at the Bruin Lineman Camp and Fraley quickly reiterated that offer once hired. Dedich has made a case to be the best linemen in the West, period, despite being a true center. He's easily the best center in the country but has to be considered one of the premier linemen nationally, regardless of position. He's a high priority recruit for the Bruins and Fraley and has visited campus since Fraley was hired and hit it off with him. Dedich was offered by USC recently and has over 20 offers, so as his stock continues to rise, UCLA will have to keep recruiting him hard, but they've prioritized him without question.
Tommy Brown (OT), Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei
Brown was also offered after the Bruin Linemen Camp last summer and he too was quickly prioritized by Fraley. He visited in February with his teammate Chris Murray and his line coach at Mater Dei is former Bruin lineman Chris Ward. He also attended a couple of UCLA's spring practices to watch Fraley up close. He's hoping for an offer for Alabama (the school his father attended) while being drawn to Auburn, which has offered, as well as Oregon, Cal and Michigan.
Steven Jones (OT), Temecula (Calif.) Chaparral
Jones was probably the third best prospect at UCLA's Lineman Camp last summer, but only Dedich and Brown left with offers. After a good junior year and a good spring, Jones visited UCLA unofficially in March and Fraley offered him then and that was big for Jones, who coveted a Bruin offer. Dedich and Jones aren't officially a package deal but the two have talked about playing together and that offer from Fraley went a long way with him. He's also looking pretty closely at the Oregon schools as well as Washington.
Chris Murray (OG), Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei
Murray may be overshadowed a bit by his the skill position teammates at Mater Dei and even by Brown on the offensive line but he's emerged this spring as one of the better interior prospects in the Southland. UCLA offered him in February and that was an offer he was hopeful for and the Bruins are doing well with him. Of course, an offer from USC could really change things up for him, but right now, Cal is probably the toughest competition for Murray.
Max Barth (OT), Stockton (Calif.) St. Mary's
Barth visited UCLA in early March and left with a favorable impression of the Bruins and with Fraley. Two of his teammates on the offensive line at St. Mary's signed with Pac-12 schools (Popo Aumavae/Oregon and Cole Noordgard/Washington) so schools got a chance to see him when recruiting those two. Barth got an early offer from the Bruins but Oregon is the school he's been talking a lot about lately and Cal can't be counted out either.
M.J. Ale (OT), Fife (Wash.)
Ale also visited in March and enjoyed his trip and his time with Fraley and the Bruins are very much a threat for him. Despite playing in Washington, he's only been in America for two years, moving here from Australia, so he doesn't have long ties to the state. That said, Washington signed a Fife prospect in 2014, Kaleb McGary, who starts at right tackle for the Huskies, and the Huskies offered him last month when he was on campus for a spring practice. Right now, it looks like the Huskies, Bruins and two Oregon schools are the ones he's looking at the closest.
Matthew Cindric (OT), Sammamish (Wash.) Skyline
Cindric also is playing in Washington, and he's a Washington native who started opposite Henry Bainivalu, who signed with Washington in February, on the offensive line. He grew up a Washington fan but lacks an offer from the local school, despite having double-digit offers. A Husky offer would be hard to beat, especially being at a school that has sent a number of players there. Cindric said he wanted to visit in April but now appears to have June as the ideal visit time.
Penei Sewell (OT), St. George (Utah) Desert Hills
Sewell is the top tackle prospect in the West and landed his first offer a year ago from UCLA. But then when Klemm was let go, there was little communication from UCLA. However, Fraley got in touch with Sewell and he came out and visited in April and UCLA shot right back into the mix for the four-star and has a very realistic shot at him now. He does like USC a lot and they could still be hard to beat, but UCLA is now back in it after being all but eliminated.
Miles Owens (OT), Oakland (Calif.) Bishop O'Dowd
Owens picked up an early offer from the Bruins and it immediately stuck with him and he's said that it puts UCLA on his short list. He then visited last month for spring practice and raved about the campus, the visit, the coaches and Los Angeles and said UCLA was on his very short list. He's an intriguing prospect who we're looking forward to seeing at The Opening Oakland this month. He's a basketball player first but started at tackle opposite four-star USC signee Alijah Vera-Tucker and has a lot of upside.
Brandon Mello (OT), Concord (Calif.) Clayton Valley
Mello is another player who played opposite a USC tackle signee, opposite Khalil McKenzie a year ago. He took a visit to UCLA in April and he too raved about it and UCLA is very much in the mix for him. Mello will also be at The Opening this month so we'll get to see him in person.
Joey Ramos (OT), Glendale (Ariz.) Deer Valley
Ramos is on UCLA's short list but likely projects as an inside guy at the next level. He's visited UCLA already this spring and raved about his trip but he's getting a lot of attention from Arizona State and Oregon, which was the dream school growing up.
Will Craig (OT), Granite Bay (Calif.)
Craig visited UCLA this spring and he's become one of the more heavily recruited prospects in the state. Angus McClure was who offered him but Fraley has followed up and stayed on him. Cal is the school Craig was most impressed with, being closer to home and being his first Pac-12 offer. UCLA though, definitely made a big impression on him on his unofficial so right now, it looks like the two in-state schools are battling it out for him.
Matteo Mele (OT), Tucson (Ariz.) Salpointe Catholic
Mele moved into the Scout 300 earlier this spring and is becoming one of the more hotly pursued offensive linemen in the West. The four-star visited UCLA in March and glowed about the trip, saying that UCLA was among his leaders and would be a factor throughout his recruitment. The Bruins are in the mix with Arizona State, Colorado and Louisville, but Oregon left a big impression on him when he visited last week and could be the team to beat.
Jacob Isaia (OG/C), Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman
Isaia is the son of former Bruin lineman Sale Isaia and had made no bones about his hopes for a Bruin offer, which he got an unofficial visit in March. His grandfather, though, played at Michigan State, and the Spartans also have offered and that was a big one for him as well. It's likely a battle between those two schools, but UCLA has Bishop Gorman teammate Thompson-Robinson recruiting him daily so that's certainly something to monitor.
Rafiti Ghirmai (OT), Frisco (Texas) Wakeland
Ghirmai is a national recruit, but he took an unofficial visit to UCLA in the spring and enjoyed his time and spoke highly of Fraley and Westwood. In fact, Ghirmai enjoyed the trip so much, he's planning to return to campus in June when he's in Los Angeles for a graduation. UCLA will have to work against schools like Alabama and Texas, but the unofficial visit earlier this spring went a long way with him.
Reuben Unije (OT), Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy
Unije has a UCLA offer and he told Scout earlier this spring that the Bruins have been one of the schools recruiting him the hardest and indicated that an unofficial visit could come this summer. But the SEC and Big 12 schools are the ones he said have really stood out to him.
Marco Brewer (OG), Corvallis (Ore.)
Brewer took an unofficial to UCLA in April but left without an offer. That changed this week, though, when UCLA became the first Pac-12 school to offer the three-star. He can play tackle or guard, but likely projects inside in college. The UCLA offer was a big one for him and he's also a good student with Ivy League offers. The offer from the Bruins, though, could open some Pac-12 floodgates with him.
Verdis Brown (OT), Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy
Brown is originally from Illinois, moving to IMG for his senior season. He told Scout over the weekend that Florida State and Michigan are schools he really likes but said that he talks to UCLA almost daily. That said, he also said he's feeling more the Midwest schools.
Next Tier to Watch:
Solo Vaipulu (OG), Corona (Calif.) Centennial
Vaipulu was one of the surprises at the Los Angeles Opening Regional and he could be a guy that UCLA watches more closely this spring but will likely be a summer camp target to see if he'll get a UCLA offer.
Other Names to Know:
(prospects included here could be guys 1) UCLA might not offer or 2) those they have offered we think are extreme long shots to get.)
Nick Petit-Frere (OT), 6-6, 258, Tampa (Fla.) Berkeley Prep - OFFERED
Trey Stratford (C), 6-3, 271, Allen (Texas) - OFFERED
Daniel Faalele (OT), 6-8, 400, Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy - OFFERED
Jack Carman (OT), 6-6, 290, Fairfield (Ohio) - OFFERED
Jaelyn Duncan (OT), 6-6, 295, Baltimore (Md.) St. Frances Academy - OFFERED
John Campbell (OT), 6-5, 285, Orlando (Fla.) Dr. Phillips - OFFERED
Connor Galvin (OT), 6-6, 250, Katy (Texas) - OFFERED
Syr Riley (OG), 6-4, 302, Pacific Palisades (Calif.)
Jake Syptak (OT), 6-5, 265, The Woodlands (Texas)
Kekaniokoa Gonzalez (OG/C), 6-2, 285, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei
Jarrett Patterson, (OT), 6-5, 275, Mission Viejo (Calif.)