Wide Receiver Commits

UCLA will have to get more room on the back of its jersey for the name of Ghebreselassie. What made the sleeper wide receiver from Chula Vista commit when Head Coach Bob Toledo called him yesterday?

Alex Ghebreselassie, 6-3, 185, Chula Vista (Calif.) Bonita Vista, verbally committed to UCLA last night.

"When Coach Toledo called me, I verbally committed," he said. "I was leaning pretty heavily going into the conversation and when he called me I just told him I wanted to verbal."

Ghebreselassie is a sleeper wide receiver who only really started getting attention when we first reported about him after he attended UCLA's spring scrimmage.

UCLA, reportedly, had received a highlight reel of Ghebreselassie (pronounced Gay-breh-seh-lay-see) the week of the 15th, offered the wide receiver the week of the 22nd, and he committed yesterday.

Ghebreselassie caught 48 balls for 906 yards last season, while also collecting seven interceptions playing free safety on defense. He said he runs the 40 in 4.49. The plan is for him to play quarterback on his high school team next year, out of necessity, but he's projected purely as a wide receiver on the college level.

Colorado, Colorado State, Arizona and San Diego State had offered Ghebreselassie, but when UCLA offered him April 22nd, the Bruins became his instant leader.

After he attended UCLA's spring scrimmage, he said he was all downhill from there. "I went to the scrimmage, and I said I thought I should wait a bit, and see how I felt. But I was still really excited, and I knew it was the right choice. I knew I didn't want to go out of state and I wanted to stay close to home. It's a great football program, a great tradition and it has great academics. You need to get better than a 4.0 to get in as a regular student, so it's a great opportunity. If football doesn't work out for me, I have something really to fall back on."

What does Ghebreselassie plan to do now that he's verbally committed? "Well, it takes the pressure off. So now I can focus on football and school. I know people get really nervous about recruiting, so I won't have to. And then I'll try to recruit Reggie Bush. I know him. We played Pop Warner together and I'll play against him in a passing league this summer."

Ghebreselassie, who maintains a 3.4 GPA, will also take the SAT for the first time in June.


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