The UCLA Recruit With the Not-So-UCLA Name

He is Mikhail Marinovich and yes, the 6-5, 225-pound athlete from San Juan Capistrano (Calif.) Serra is the younger brother of USC's former quarterback, Todd Marinovich. But that didn't stop the tight end/defensive end prospect from attending UCLA's camp, and looking very good...

One of the top players at UCLA's Camp on Sunday was San Juan Capistrano (Calif.) Serra tight end/defensive end Mikhail Marinovich (6-5.5, 225).

And yes, they're related.

The younger brother of former USC and Los Angeles Raiders quarterback Todd Marinovich, the "little brother" spent Sunday at his big brothers rival school, and looked good doing so.

"I thought I did pretty well," said Marinovich. "I go to a really small school so the camps are important for me to get some exposure."

While his brother went through a well-publicized high school career, Mikhail hasn't had much of a spotlight. "Football-wise, it's hard for me to get my name out," Marinovich said. "I just started getting letters about three weeks ago. Not a lot of people have heard of our school. I led our team in catches and in sacks, but not many people know about me."

Marinovich, in fact, had 45 catches for 730 yards last season, and three sacks. At the camp Sunday, he tested very well for his size, running a 4.37 in the shuttle and a 4.85 40-yard dash, on UCLA's notoriously slow fields.

He said that the lack of exposure has been frustrating, but that he's making the most of the situation. "Being at a small school kind of hurts, so I realize how important it is for me to perform well in front of the coaches," said Marinovich.

Marinovich has yet to receive his first scholarship offer, which is not surprising, considering the lack of exposure. But plenty of schools in the past three weeks have made up for lost time, either writing, calling or visiting him.

"Arizona has come by and another school did, though I can't remember who it was. I've also heard from Nebraska and Arizona State," said Marinovich.

USC has also shown some interest, and not surprisingly, Marinovich is interested in the Trojans. Surprising, though, is his real interest in UCLA.

"I love UCLA and what I've seen from them," said Marinovich. "All of my family has gone to USC, and I'm sure if I went to UCLA, there would be a conflict. They all want me at USC. But if UCLA were to offer me, I may take it. I know they already have a tight end coming in (Nate Chandler), and he's really good, but they said they are still looking for two."

Marinovich plays tight end for Serra primarily and also played linebacker last season, before moving to defensive end near the season's close. This year, he'll play tight end and defensive end. But he wants to stay on offense.

"I want to play tight end in college. I'm getting looks at tight end, defensive end and safety. But I like tight end," said Marinovich.

Besides the UCLA Camp, Marinovich attended the Nike Camp in Palo Alto, and has plans to head to USC's camp next weekend, then Arizona and Florida camps this summer.

Despite the obvious ties to USC, Marinovich does have one tie to UCLA. "I work out with (UCLA-committed QB) Chris Forcier. My dad trains him," said Marinovich. "He's a friend and I'd love to play with him. He's a great quarterback."

Academically, Marinovich said he is in good shape to qualify.


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