Ryan Boschetti, 6-4, 275, San Mateo (Calif.) San Mateo JC, confirmed that he verbally committed to UCLA.
"I'm a Bruin," Boschetti said. "I'm sending in my Letter of Intent today."
Boschetti said he told UCLA he was coming last week, picking the Bruins over Arizona, Colorado State, and others. "There were other schools, but I wanted to stay on the west coast and I just didn't have enough time to take trips to other schools," he said. "I visited Colorado State mid-week, then Arizona the next weekend and UCLA the next. I had a lot of opportunities to visit other schools, but didn't have a lot of time. When it was all said and done, UCLA was the place I knew I was going to be playing a high level of football, face good competition, and my family would be able to see me play by staying in state."
Boschetti graduated from Belmont (Calif.) Carmont High School in 1999. When he graduated he was 6-2 and weighed about 215 pounds. He went to San Mateo JC and gray-shirted, that is, didn't take enough credits for his eligibility clock to start ticking. "That gray shirt was pretty important," he said. "It gave me a year to get bigger. I had played defensive line in high school and it gave me the time to grow. I was fortunate that my body actually caught up with my intention to play defensive line. I didn't envision I'd get this big [he says he's 6-4 1/2]. If I hadn't grown like this I'd probably be playing safety."
Boschetti then played as a JC freshman in the fall of 2000 and made all-conference and all-region, which was rare for a freshman. This year he was named to many JC All-American lists and ranked the #2 JC player in the country by JCFootball.com. Over the last two years, he's totalled 21 sacks.
The goal Boschetti had for himself coming out of high school was to play in the Pac-10, and he said he really wanted to stick to it. "It was a big goal of mine. And when I had to make my final decision on where I wanted to go, I really went back and evaluated that original goal, to play in the Pac-10, and that was a big factor."
Boschetti still has three years to use two years of eligibility and said he's flexible about how to utilize it. "UCLA doesn't recruit a lot of JC guys," he said. "They didn't recruit any defensive linemen my year. They've told me they'd like me to come in and make a difference, make an impact. They're not talking three to play two, but want me to come in for spring ball and make an impact, and be a starter or a number two guy on the depth chart. But also, with that redshirt year available, I wouldn't hesitate to redshirt. It's nice to have because you never know what's going to happen. Staying healthy is tough."
His strength, he said, is his explosion off the ball and his quickness. "I'm definitely best at pass rush. I've thought of myself more as a defensive end than a tackle, but I like being closer to the quarterback as a tackle. I'll play wherever they put me." He added that he wanted to continue to improve his technique of staying lower to the ground and gaining more strength. "You can always get stronger," he said.
Boschetti was fully qualified out of high school and maintains a GPA around 3.5 at San Mateo.
Photos courtesy of JCFootball.com