UCLA's Football Recruiting Class Of 2005

With National-Letter-of-Intent Day upon us, here's a look at the 2005 football recruiting class, which still might not be complete just yet...

UCLA has received National Letters of Intent from every recruit who had previously verbally committed.

The recruiting class for the 2005 campaign includes 21 recruits, 20 high school seniors and one college transfer.

The Bruins strength in this class was their secondary, where they received commitments from one of the best safeties and best 2-way players in the nation.

Offensively, UCLA signed two quarterbacks, including one of the premier QBs in the nation, in BYU transfer Ben Olson, and also landed a solid tight end trio.

Here is a look at the Class of 2005.

OFFENSE

QUARTERBACKS

UCLA needed to bring in at least one quarterback in this class and while it looked early on like they would only bring in one, the one they waited for, came.  With Ben Olson and Osaar Rasshan, UCLA has the more polished guy ready to contribute immediately, and the more raw guy waiting in the wings.

Ben Olson, 6-5, 230. Thousand Oaks (Calif.) High. The key to this recruiting class.  Olson committed in December and began classes at UCLA in January.  With Drew Olson questionable for the 2005 season, Ben Olson has a chance to win the starting job as a redshirt freshman in Spring Practice.  Easily UCLA's biggest recruit since DeShaun Foster in 1998, and possibly the Bruins most important recruit since Cade McNown came in 1995.  Olson was the top-rated QB in 2002, went to BYU, took his 2-year Mormon mission and when he returned, left BYU for Westwood.  A cannon for an arm and great mobility for his size, Olson is the kind of recruit who can be a program-maker while in college.

Osaar Rasshan, 6-4, 215.  Pomona (Calif.) Garey.  The Bruins longest standing commit in this class, Rasshan verbaled to UCLA last February, and while he looked around towards the end, he stuck with his commitment and will come to UCLA in the Fall.  Rasshan is quite possibly the most athletic recruit that UCLA has brought in to the program in the last 5 years.  A gifted baseball player (he reportedly throws in the low-mid 90's as a pitcher), Rasshan has toyed with the idea of playing on the diamond in college.  Had a strong senior year, being named to the Los Angeles Times All-San Gabriel Valley Team at quarterback after throwing for 1,716 yards and 20 touchdowns and rushing for 860 and 11 touchdowns.  He also had a pair of interceptions and 47 tackles and averaged 45 yards a punt.  Rasshan will most likely redshirt in 2005.

 

RUNNING BACKS

With some running back depth, UCLA didn't go as aggresively on running backs as they have in years past, and the couple they went after hard, committed elsewhere.  The lone back they are bringing in is Kahlil Bell.

Kahlil Bell, 5-11, 205, Kentfield (Calif.) Marin Catholic.  Bell had a monster senior year, leading the Bay Area in rushing with 2,300 yards and 31 touchdowns. On defense, he totaled 70 tackles and five picks at safety.  Bell is similar in build to sophomore running back Derrick Williams.  With Maurice Drew and Chris Markey as well as Williams and Jason Harrison, Bell will most likely redshirt in 2005, but if he could put on 15-20 pounds, he could also move to fullback.

 

WIDE RECEIVERS

UCLA brought in three receivers in 2004 and has some good young talent there so they didn't go after many receivers.  However their biggest target, Jeremy Childs, got away after initially committing to UCLA.

Jamil Turner, 6-1, 190, Spanaway (Wash.) Bethel.  Turner led the state of Washington in receiving with 1500+ yards receiving on 75 catches.  He also scored 20 touchdowns for the Braves.  Somewhat of a sleeper despite his numbers, Turner is built similar to Junior Taylor, though lacking the speed of Junior yet having better hands. 

Gavin Ketchum, 6-4, 190, Oak Park (Calif.) High.  Probably the best receiver in Ventura County, Ketchum received most of his honors on the defensive side of the ball, where he was named the CIF Defensive Player of the Year, in leading the Eagles to the Division XI finals where they lost to fellow Bruin recruit Aaron Ware and Oaks Christian.  Ironically, Ketchum was named to the All CIF Southern Section team (all divisions) as a receiver.  Ketchum scored 20 touchdowns with 59 receptions for 1,097 yards.  On defense he had 75 tackles and 4 interceptions.  He will start out at wide receiver at UCLA.

 

TIGHT ENDS

UCLA has a big need at tight end, with Marcedes Lewis and Keith Carter both graduating after the 2005 season.  They brought in three tight ends in this class, but interestingly enough, all three recruits very well could move positions.  Anyhow, all three will begin their careers as tight ends at UCLA.

Logan Paulsen, 6-5, 225, West Hills (Calif.) Chaminade.  Paulsen had 36 catches for 513 yards and a pair of touchdowns for Chaminade, where he an all-CIF tight end.  Defensively, he had 37 tackles and 9 sacks for the Eagles, while also seeing punting duties.  Probably the best hands of the incoming tight end crop, Paulsen could also move to outside linebacker/defensive end when he comes to UCLA.

Ryan Moya, 6-3, 230, El Dorado Hills (Calif.) Oak Ridge.  Moya missed half of his senior season because of a shoulder injury, but still put together monster numbers.  He had 44 catches for 557 yards and 11 touchdowns, while also tallying 27 tackles on defense, despite only playing in four games on defense.  With his versatility, Moya could also play fullback/H-back for the Bruins.

Adam Heater, 6-5, 245, Snohomish (Wash.) High.  Heater, the son of Florida assistant coach Chuck Heater, committed back in the summer.  He comes from the alma mater of offensive coordinator Tom Cable, who coached with Heater's dad at Colorado.  Heater is a big kid, and projects to be an offensive tackle in college, with good range and feet.  Primarily a blocking back in a running offense, Heater will start out at tight end.

 

OFFENSIVE LINE

The Bruins brought in a load of offensive linemen in 2004, primarily inside guys, and focused on tackles in this class.  They are bringing in one of the nations best in Aleksey Lanis.

Aleksey Lanis, 6-6, 315, Los Angeles (Calif.) Crenshaw.  One of the top offensive linemen in the nation, Lanis is the state's best offensive tackle, and was named to the Parade All-American Team, the EA Sports All-American Second Team, and was the Los Angeles Times City Lineman of the Year.  Lanis will likely be on the two-deep this fall, and could battle Brian Abraham for Paul Mociler's vacated tackle position.  Lanis dominated this season and is the Bruins most touted offensive line recruit since Mike Saffer in 1998.  Lanis was the first of three Crenshaw seniors to commit to UCLA.

Justin Brown, 6-6, 270, Long Beach (Calif.) Poly.  Lean and lanky, Brown impressed the Bruin coaches with his athleticism, and while he undoubtedly will redshirt in 2005, he will use that time to put on some more muscle.

 

DEFENSE

DEFENSIVE LINE

UCLA's defensive linemen class is full of underrated, but highly productive prep players.  They signed one of the best defensive linemen in the City Section, as well as the MVP of one of the nations premier high school programs.

Chase Moline, 6-2, 250, Mission Viejo (Calif.) High.  Moline was named the MVP of the #2 ranked team in the U.S., pretty high praise when the #1 prep QB is a teammate.  He was also named the CIF Division I Defensive Player of the Year and the Los Angeles Times Southern California Linemen of the Year for the Diablos, who were ranked #1 in the State.  Somewhat undersized, Moline will most likely redshirt in 2005.  Also, his signing with UCLA gives the Bruins a great shot at landing his brother Chase, one of the top junior running backs nationally.

Jess Ward, 6-4, 260, Lake Arrowhead (Calif.) Rim of the World.  Ward committed to the Bruins back before the season started, though no one heard until December.  Playing in the San Bernardino Mountains, Ward didn't get a lot of press, but had a strong senior year.  He was named to the CIF Southern Section First Team (All Divisions) and was chosen by the Los Angeles Times as the Desert/Mountain Lineman of the Year.  Ward will play defensive tackle at UCLA, despite playing linebacker for the Scots this season.

Chinonso Anyanwu, 6-4, 210, Los Angeles (Calif.) Crenshaw.  Anyanwu will definitely benefit from Doc Kreis' lifting program, as he will need to put on around 25-30 pounds to play defensive end at UCLA.  Otherwise, he could be moved to outside linebacker for the Bruins.  One of three Crenshaw seniors to sign with UCLA.

 

LINEBACKERS

UCLA needed depth at linebackers, as its three starters in 2005 are all seniors, so they added four players to the mix in this class.

Reggie Carter, 6-1, 225, Los Angeles (Calif.) Crenshaw.  Carter was named to the Los Angeles Times All-City Team and will play inside linebacker at UCLA.  Because of the lack of depth at linebacker, Carter is the most likely candidate from the freshman backers to see playing time as a freshman.  One of three Crenshaw seniors to become Bruins.

John Hale, 6-3, 220, Los Alamitos (Calif.) High.  Hale spent his first season as a linebacker making play after play, recording over 125 tackles in leading the Griffins to the CIF Division I Finals.  He was an all-CIF Division I selection and was named to the Los Angeles Times All-Orange County team.  Hale is in the mold of Spencer Havner, and will compete for the #2 spot behind Havner this fall.

Korey Miller, 6-2, 220, Plano (Texas) West.  Along with his twin brother Kyle, Korey Miller comes to UCLA with some excellent pedigree, as the nephew of former Butkus Award Winner Brian Bosworth (Oklahoma).  Miller camped at UCLA this past summer, and committed to the Bruins in the fall.  An excellent student as well, Korey will become Korey Bosworth when he enters UCLA in August.  Miller had 100 tackles for the Wolves as a senior.

Kyle Miller, 6-2, 215, Plano (Texas) West.  Like his twin brother Korey, Kyle Miller camped at UCLA this past summer and committed to the Bruins the same day his brother did.  The nephew of the Boz, Kyle is a gifted student and will also change his name to Kyle Bosworth upon entry at UCLA.  Had 93 tackles, 11 tackles for loss and 3 interceptions as a senior.

 

DEFENSIVE BACKS

The strength of the Bruins recruiting class is their secondary, where they signed one of the best safeties in the country and one of the best athletes in the nation.

Shawn Oatis, 5-11, 205, Chino (Calif.) High.  The Bruins top defensive recruit, Oatis is one of the Top 5 safeties nationally and was an All-CIF Southern Section (all divisions) selection as a defensive back.  Also an excellent running back, Oatis will definitely play on the defensive side of the ball in college.  Oatis picked the Bruins over Ohio State and Notre Dame, and gives the Bruins an intimidating hitter in their secondary.  An excellent student, Oatis sports a 3.7 and is one of 5 high school seniors nationally to be named a finalist for the prestigious Watkins Award, given to the top African-American Senior Football Player.  Interestingly enough, fellow signee Robert Kibble is also a finalist.

Aaron Ware, 6-0, 190, Westlake Village (Calif.) Oaks Christian.  Ware completes the quarter of family members to go to UCLA.  Both his mother and father are alums of UCLA, and his older brother Matt was a 3-year starter at Cornerback for the Bruins and is playing in the NFL for the Philadelphia Eagles.  Ware, one of Southern California's most decorated players the past two seasons, was destined to be a Bruin, and committed in April.  He was named the CIF Division XI Offensive Player of the Year for the second consecutive year and helped lead Oaks Christian to back-to-back CIF Division XI championships.  He was also named to the All-CIF Southern Section (All Divisions) team, and finished his senior year in the top three in career rushing in Ventura County history.  In his senior year, Ware rushed for 1,079 yards, had 26 catches for 423 yards and scored 19 touchdowns, despite playing only in the first half  in most of Oaks Christian's games.  But rushing stats aside, Ware will, like his brother, move from the offensive side of the ball to cornerback in college.  Ware could play immediately at the spot vacated by Matt Clark.

Robert Kibble, 5-10, 175, Houston (Texas) Mesquite.  One of the great stories of this years Bruin class, Kibble committed to the Bruins back in the late Spring.  An excellent student, Kibble has a 3.8 GPA and like fellow signee Shawn Oatis, is one of 5 national finalists for the Watkins Award, given to the top African-American High School Senior football player.  Kibble was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis during the season, but continued to play his senior campign with the illness.  Though he will always have it, UCLA honored his scholarship offer, and Kibble said he is definitely playing football with no plans to quit.  Though he played primarily safety in high school, the hard-hitting Kibble could also play corner if necessary.

Bret Lockett, 6-1, 195, Diamond Bar (Calif.) High.  Lockett committed to his longtime favorite UCLA in January and while he had a productive high school career as a receiver, he will start his UCLA career in the secondary.  He has been told by the staff, though, that he could play some offense.   He had 56 tackles and four sacks as a safety and an interception.  He also returned kicks for the Brahmas.  Offensively, he had 27 catches for 491 yards and 7 touchdowns.


***UCLA is still waiting on the decision of Erik Lorig, the 6-4, 250-pound tight end/athlete from Rolling Hills (Calif.) Palos Verdes Peninsula. He is reportedly still in the process of making his decision, trying to decide between UCLA, USC, Cal and Stanford.


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