Verner Takes Another Visit

Alterraun Verner, the wide receiver/defensive back from Mayfair who committed to UCLA in October, took an unofficial visit this last weekend -- to another Pac-10 school, and he tells us why...

Lakewood (Calif.) Mayfair athlete Alterraun Verner (6-0, 175) gave a commitment to UCLA back in October having not taken any official visits.

When he visited UCLA officially earlier this month, it was the first trip he had taken and, most assumed, the only trip.

So when Verner took one more visit this past weekend, to Oregon, it caused a bit of a stir.

"Oregon was the first school to really offer me (from the Pac-10) and I wanted to have something to compare UCLA to," said Verner. "It was a real good trip and I liked it. But I'm still pretty firm with UCLA. Right now it's standing that I'll sign with UCLA."

Verner said the highlight of the trip to Oregon was being able to see the facilities Oregon has. He said, "I got to see the world-famous locker room. It was crazy, they had the X-Box's on when we got in there. Autzen Stadium was really intriguing. All I was knowing was what UCLA had to offer, but I was able to see the two schools and meet with academic advisors at both places. It was a very educational trip for me."

Still, Verner said that the likelihood of him changing his mind is remote. "It would take a lot to change things. It would take a revelation for me to change my mind. I'm going to think about, but I'm real close to 100% sure that I'm signing with UCLA," said Verner.

One thing Verner would like to be able to do is meet either one of his possible position coaches at UCLA, new receivers coach D.J. McCarthy or new defensive coordinator DeWayne Walker. But because of the dead period, any talking with them would have to follow Signing Day.

"I just heard about Coach Walker being hired today. While I would like to play receiver, I know UCLA considers me a defensive player. Playing for him would be intriguing because he has coached some great DBs with the Redskins and he's coached the best," said Verner.

And UCLA has become more open to Verner trying his hand on the offensive side of the ball, according to Verner. "Coach (Karl) Dorrell and Coach (Jon) Embree have mentioned to me that I may get a chance to play receiver. But I will be happy to do what helps the team," Verner said.

Verner indicated he was looking forward to Signing Day and ending the long recruiting process. "It will be a relief because it will be set in stone that I am attending this school. Then the rest of the year is just get ready for college," said Verner.

Verner will run track this spring for Mayfair, doing the 300 hurdles, the high jump and relays while also adding the 100m, 200m and 400m to his repertoire.

A selection to the CaliFlorida Bowl game that was played in late December, Verner was also named his League player of the year and an all-CIF selection as well as the City of Lakewood Athlete of the Year.

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