Sloan is Still Solid on UCLA

The #7-ranked strongside linebacker prospect in the country, 6-3, 220-pound Steve Sloan of San Jose Archbishop Mitty, committed to UCLA last spring. Now, in November, he talks about how he views his commitment to the Bruins...

San Jose (Calif.) Archbishop Mitty linebacker Steve Sloan (6-3, 220), said early in his recruitment that the first school to offer him between Cal and UCLA would likely get his commitment.

When Cal offered him and UCLA hadn't, he refrained from verballing. When the UCLA offer finally came, he decided to pull the trigger and committed to the Bruins.

Fast forward to the fall of 2006 and months after giving his pledge to the Bruins, Sloan said he's as solid as ever with UCLA. "Basically, all the schools know that I'm strongly committed to UCLA," said Sloan. "They all backed off when they knew how much I liked UCLA."

And even with the UCLA season not going particularly well, Sloan isn't concerned. "Not really concerned at all," said Sloan. "I know that their defense has still had a big turnaround from the year before and I want to help make it even better."

Sloan, the #7 ranked strongside linebacker in the nation by, intends to have an impact on UCLA's defense as a true freshman. "The plan is for me to come in behind Christian Taylor and not to redshirt, but play behind him and really learn from him," said Sloan.

This fall, Sloan played most of the early part of the year with a cast on his hand after breaking it in the second game. This past weekend, with his cast off, he had one of the best games of his career.

"I finally felt comfortable without the cast," said Sloan. "I felt like when I had the cast on, I couldn't really wrap up and couldn't really play my game. But now that it's off, I'm feeling comfortable."

Against Riordan, Sloan had 20 tackles, forced two fumbles and had a sack while carrying the ball one time on offense, scoring a touchdown.

"It was pretty sweet, on the first drive, they were by the goal line and I rushed in and hit the running back and forced a fumble and it was a touchback. That kind of opened the door. We had lost the past two games and for our team we needed a boost. I'm the team captain so I had to make a play," said Sloan.

Mitty went on to win 42-7 and stayed alive for the West Catholic League title. "If we win our next two then we're in a three-way tie for first. But we're locked into the playoffs for the first time in two years," said Sloan. "I'm playing middle linebacker, but one game, I played outside linebacker. I might play there more so I can crush the fullback and make a difference."

Sloan is planning to take his official trip to UCLA in December, with the 15th being the tentative date. He's been to one home game this fall, when they hosted Stanford, and he's hoping to see the Bruins when they visit the Bay Area this weekend.

"(UCLA) Coach (D.J.) McCarthy keeps in touch with me," said Sloan. "We're planning on visiting December 15th but that hasn't been set in stone just yet."

Last season, Sloan had 63 solo tackles and 70 assisted tackles, two sacks and an interception and also played goa lline fullback, scoring a pair of touchdowns on 10 carries. He ended the year an all-WCAL first-team selection

Academically, Sloan said he was an easy qualifier.

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