Recruiting Re-Set: Offense

With the spring evaluation period over, and commitments coming at a good rate, here's a re-setting of UCLA's football recruiting. The Bruins have four scholarships left, but look determined to get them filled quickly. We first look at the prospects for the 2008 class on the offensive side of the ball...

With the spring evaluation period now over, we definitely have a better feel for UCLA's top targets.

After signing an unusually small class in February, UCLA now has a large number of recruits to sign for 2008.

As of now, there are 25 scholarships to give, which is the NCAA limit for a given year, and it appears that UCLA intends to give out all 25.

To date, UCLA has 21 commitments, 11 on offense and 10 on defense. There are some positions where, if they don't get an elite prospect they want, they could hold pat with the commitments they have, and others where they might need two (tight end).

In this review, we'll try to lay out exactly which players have been offered scholarships who could be offered, and what are UCLA's priorities at each position.

This isn't going to be a comprehensive list of everyone UCLA has shown interest in, but a list that concentrates on those players UCLA has offered and those that could possibly receive an offer.

QUARTERBACKS:

The Bruins already have a commitment from Crissman, who, other than Landry Jones (who committed to Oklahoma), was the only other quarterback the Bruin staff offered. With the word being that sophomore Osaar Rasshan has moved to wide receiver, there is the possibility that UCLA could end up taking another QB. We've heard that they'll only take another quarterback if they feel there's one available who's good enough. If not, they could be content to call it a day with Crissman's commitment, and if so, they're in good shape, as he's considered one of the top two quarterbacks on the West Coast this year. Still, they could bring in a second, smaller but more athletic quarterback in this class. We've heard Prince, with a Pac-10 offer already, is the guy they're watching closely to determine whether they'll offer, and they could wait until fall. Katz and Griffin, though, could also be guys UCLA goes after, if they look particularly good in their senior season. The class of 2009, though, is expected to be loaded at quarterback in the west, so it wouldn't be a surprise if they stood pat with Crissman.

Nick Crissman, 6-3, 200, Huntington Beach (Calif.) Edison. COMMITTED. When Jones committed to Oklahoma, UCLA didn't run out and offer any quarterback, in fact, they took a much more deliberate approach. New offensive coordinator Jay Norvell diligently went out and watched each of the quarterbacks that UCLA had targeted and Crissman was their guy. Once they offered, he committed on the spot. Crissman is a tough player, evidenced by the constant pressure and hits he faced in the CIF Pac-5 championship game – hits he he kept getting up from. He threw for almost 3,100 yards and 27 touchdowns in leading the Chargers to the finals and he's had an outstanding spring, looking good at the Air 7 QBU Camp, the Scout.com Combine and the Elite 11 Workout in Las Vegas.  Crissman is the first UCLA commit to be an Elite 11 selection since the summer of 2001, when Drew Olson participated in it (Ben Olson also was at the same Elite 11). He'll need to add some weight, but he's been well-coached by Dave White at Edison and is a solid quarterback commitment for the Bruins. Offered

Other Quarterbacks Of Note:

Ryan Griffin, 6-4, 206, West Hills (Calif.) Chaminade
Kevin Prince, 6-2.5, 195, Encino (Calif.) Crespi
Ryan Katz, 6-2, 195, Santa Monica (Calif.)
Jack Elway, 6-3, 190, Englewood (Colo.) Cherry Creek

RUNNING BACKS:

UCLA already has three commitments at this position with Knox, Dean and Coleman, who is coming in as a fullback, but could serve in a role similar to Manuel White and Chane Moline. UCLA is also still in the running for Scott, the #1 running back in the country, but with three commitments at running back, will probably be content with who they have coming in.

Milton Knox, 5-8, 196, Van Nuys (Calif.) Birmingham.  COMMITTED. Knox was visited by Karl Dorrell at the Birmingham campus in May and they offered him that day. The Bruins had been one of his top teams throughout and not to long after the offer was official, Knox became a "silent" verbal to UCLA.  A month later, in late June, Knox made it public that he was committing to the hometown Bruins, just a quick drive from his home in the Valley. While he doesn't have the conventional size or speed in a running back, his output cannot be argued, as he is close to shattering just about every City rushing record. Knox was the City Player of the Year as a junior, beating out UCLA signees Brian Price and Raymond Carter, and is the frontrunner for those honors again.  Offered

Aundre Dean, 6-1, 201, Katy (Texas). COMMITTED. Dean was originally a commit to Texas A&M, but he was still intrigued by the Bruin program, thanks to Gary DeLoach laying the ground work a year ago. When Norvell came to UCLA, his recruitment of Dean when he was at Nebraska started tipping the scales in UCLA's favor for Dean. Once Dean made an unofficial trip to Westwood, he fell in love with UCLA and decommitted from Texas A&M. He then decided to go with UCLA and the four-star back gives the Bruins a top-rated back from Texas for the first time since Skip Hicks was in high school.  Offered

Derrick Coleman, 6-0, 223, Fullerton (Calif.) Troy. COMMITTED. Coleman put on a show at the UCLA 1-Day Camp earlier this month and by the time he got home, he had an offer from the Bruin staff. Coleman is being brought in as a fullback, but he's not in the Michael Pitre mold, where he's strictly a blocker with the occasional carry or reception. He's more in the White/Moline mold where he could be a short-yardage threat with the chance to line up as a single-back. His high school production can't be disputed, rushing for 2,340 yards and 37 touchdowns, averaging 180 yards a game and 10.6 ypc. As a junior. Coleman is the #3 fullback in the country and may turn out to be a steal for the Bruins. Offered

Darrell Scott, 6-1, 205, Ventura (Calif.) St. Bonaventure. Scott is the top player in the West, the top running back in the nation and one of the five best players in the country. So yes, UCLA would be plenty thrilled to get him. The Bruins have made it into his final 10, and he'll be paring that list down again by summer. With offers from everyone who's anyone nationally, Scott will have his pick of the litter. While UCLA was one of the first schools to get an unofficial visit from him, Colorado has the family connection, signing his uncle Josh Smith in February. And with schools like LSU, Florida, Texas, Michigan, USC and Cal also making a push, Scott could take all the time he needs to make a choice, and he likely will, saying recently that he's going to wait until Signing Day. A few weeks ago, the word was that UCLA was doing very well with Scott, and even leading for him, but recently those rumors have cooled. Offered

Other Running Backs Of Note:

Covaughn Deboskie, 6-0, 192, Chandler (Ariz.) Hamilton.
Richard Watson, 6-1, 220, Tallahassee (Fla.) Florida A&M
Ryan Bass, 5-10, 185, Corona (Calif.) Centennial
Sam McGuffie, 5-11.5, 190, Cypress (Texas) Cy-Fair
Cyrus Gray, 5-11, 190, DeSoto (Texas)
Reggie Hunt, 5-10, 180, Daphne (Ala)

RECEIVERS:

UCLA has gotten off to a strong start at receiver, getting three commitments already at the position, and having offers out to several more. They lose three receivers after this year in Marcus Everett, Brandon Breazell and Joe Cowan, so they have a big need at this position. Each of the three they've gotten commitments from are solid prospects, Bateman being one of the top two receivers for 2008 on the West Coast. They've also have offers out to some national targets, and to some committed prospects who are keeping their options somewhat open. With Eric Scott now in charge of the receivers at UCLA, he's had his hand in the commitment of each of these guys and will have a big say at this position.

Kemonte Bateman, 6-0, 175, Los Angeles (Calif.) Crenshaw. COMMITTED. Bateman is the best receiver UCLA has gotten a commitment from in Dorrell's tenure and while he's acknowledged that he still needs to do some work in the classroom, the recent reports say he's making strides in an effort to make it in to UCLA. Bateman was coached by Scott at Crenshaw and has made no bones about his desire to play for the Bruins. They signed two of his teammates in Carter and Price and he's been a frequent visitor to campus. Bateman has also starred this spring at the various camps and combines and is a potential Top 100 player. Offered

Jerry Johnson, 6-2, 186, Venice (Calif.). COMMITTED. Johnson was the first offensive player to commit for the class of 2008, doing so on the eve of the Bruins' big recruiting haul in March. He had 24 catches for 613 yards and four touchdowns for the Gondoliers, who ran the ball quite a bit in 2006. Johnson has great hands and gets good separation from the defenders while running very crisp routes. Scott had a big role in getting Johnson, having watched him for a couple of seasons. In fact, Johnson committed not too long after Scott was hired, choosing the Bruins over other Pac-10 offers. At UCLA's 1-Day Camp, it was Johnson who shined the most of the committed receivers. Offered

Antwon Moutra, 6-1, 175, Culver City (Calif.).  COMMITTED. Moutra is one of the more versatile players in this class, and while he could be an elite prospect at safety, he wants to try receiver, so he will be a solid addition to the receiving corps. Moutra has UCLA ties, his cousins being former Bruin linebacker Robert Thomas and current basketball player Russell Westbrook, so those ties helped contribute to his early commitment. Moutra plays with tremendous toughness, while still being raw in his pass-catching. He caught 74 passes for 830 yards as a junior in Culver City's spread offense. While it wouldn't be a surprise if Moutra ended up on the defensive side of the ball at some point in college, he's pretty set on playing receiver to begin. Offered

Nelson Rosario, 6-5, 200, Oceanside (Calif.) El Camino. Rosario is one of the best track-and-field athletes in the country, an elite jumper, and he has said he wants to do track and football in college. UCLA has had a history of players doing both, including Darius Savage currently. Rosario is the kind of big receiver that can physically dominate that UCLA hasn't gotten lately. He was offered by the Bruins earlier this spring, and they're one of his top schools, along with Stanford and Oregon, to name a few. Rosario had 53 catches for 1,010 yards and 11 touchdowns, so he can play. Rosario is leaning towards the Pac-10 and UCLA is definitely on him and he said that UCLA is one of his favorites when we talked to him at the 1-Day Camp. Of the uncommitted prospects, Rosario looked the best at that camp. If UCLA pulls in Rosario, they could have one of the best wide receiver recruiting classes in the nation. Offered

Kevan Walker, 6-0, 175, Arcadia (Calif.). The son of UCLA Defensive Coordinator DeWayne Walker, Kevan has committed to Minnesota, his dad's alma mater, but the Bruins offered him in late April, and while he has said he is sticking to his commitment to the Gophers, his father's presence at UCLA will give the Bruins a chance to sway him throughout the season. Walker could end up in the secondary in college and this fall he's playing quarterback for Arcadia. But he has said receiver is where he will play in college. Offered

Other Receivers Of Note:

Michael Floyd, 6-3, 200, St. Paul (Minn.) Cretin-Durham Offered
Brice Butler, 6-3, 190, Norcross (Ga.) Offered
DeAndre Brown, 6-6.5, 220, Ocean Springs (Miss.)
Omarius Hines, 6-1, 183, Corsicana (Tex.)
Marvin Jones, 6-2, 175, Etiwanda (Calif.)
Robbie Boyer, 6-0, 170, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei
Martin Bayless, 6-2, 195, Chula Vista (Calif.) Castle Park
Alonso Agwuenu, 6-3, 186, Chino Hills (Calif.)

TIGHT ENDS:

Harkey's commitment was key for UCLA, after losing Joseph Fauria to Notre Dame and Ayles no longer listing UCLA.  The Bruins could take two tight ends, and luckily it's a good year for tight end in the west.

Cory Harkey, 6-4, 230, Chino Hills (Calif.). COMMITTED. Harkey's stock is on the rise and UCLA offered him early in the spring.  He was at a couple of spring practices and had a very good showing at UCLA's 1-Day Camp and seemed to hit it off well with several of the committed players, particularly those in the Inland Empire he knew (Anthony Dye and Damien Holmes).  Harkey comes from a very athletic family, his brother Tony plays football at Utah State and his dad Mike was a longtime pitcher in the Majors and is now a coach with the Florida Marlins.  Harkey pulled the trigger in June and will come in specifically as a tight end, though he has the ability to play defensive end.    Offered

Austin Holt, 6-5, 224, South Jordan (Utah) Bingham. Holt committed to BYU, the home and church school, but after making an unofficial trip to UCLA in late April, the Bruins made a strong impression on him. Holt again came out for the UCLA 1-Day Camp and told us that he was very excited about how it went and his relationship with new tight ends coach Angus McClure. He's still committed to the Cougars, but the Bruins will keep trying. Holt said that Ben Olson, who is also LDS, made a major impression on him. Holt is the #2 tight end prospect nationally. Offered

Ryan Deehan, 6-5, 230, Poway (Calif.). Deehan has gone from being largely overlooked to a fast-riser, holding double-digit offers, including ones from UCLA, Cal and Texas A&M. He's visited UCLA unofficially, the Bruin staff has been by his campus and he attended part of UCLA's 1-Day Camp earlier this month. The Bruin staff offered him late in the spring. Offered

Other Tight Ends Of Note:

Blake Ayles, 6-4, 235, Orange (Calif.) Lutheran  Offered
Hubie Graham, 6-4, 225, West Scranton (Penn.) Scranton  Offered
Taylor Thompson, 6-6, 230, Prosper (Texas)  Offered
James Hanna, 6-4, 215, Lewisville (Texas) Flower Mound

OFFENSIVE LINEMEN:

UCLA signed just one lineman for the class of 2007, Mike Harris, after stockpiling in the previous class, so they're trying to get 4-5 linemen in this class. What the Bruins could use are tackles and they've gotten verbal commitments from two tackles and one that plays tackle but will play guard in college. Bob Connelly, the new UCLA offensive line coach, has been pounding the pavement in search of quality linemen and has three that come from solid programs and are excellent students.

Jonathan Martin, 6-7, 260, North Hollywood (Calif.). Harvard-Westlake. COMMITTED. Martin is a very good student and the UCLA coaches have been interested in him for some time. He's amassed some offers from other schools but the Bruins became the most recent school to offer him and he committed at the end of the evaluation period. A good athlete, Martin also plays basketball for the Wolverines and said that because of his early verbal, he will get to play basketball during his senior year. Offered

Connor Bradford, 6-5, 260, Palmdale (Calif.). COMMITTED. Bradford is another strong student yet, and he flew under the radar this spring as a prospect up until his recent commitment to UCLA. He had a handful of offers and UCLA offered him prior to the 1-Day Camp, where he was one of the standouts working with the offensive line. When the camp was done, Bradford committed to the Bruins. Bradford has a good frame that easily could add 20-30 pounds and he's a legit 6-5, meaning UCLA's desire to have him play tackle is the likely scenario. Offered

Jeff Baca, 6-4, 265, Mission Viejo (Calif.). COMMITTED. Baca is a great story, a lifelong UCLA fan who had offers from all over. He went to UCLA games with his father at the Rose Bowl growing up, but his father passed away just before he started high school. When UCLA offered him following the 1-Day Camp, he wasted no time, committing to Dorrell on the spot and securing his place with the Bruins. Baca plays tackle for Mission Viejo, one of the premier programs in the West and is the third Diablo that UCLA has gotten under Dorrell, something that never occurred under Bob Toledo. He'll most likely play guard, though, in college.Offered

Hamani Stevens, 6-2, 290, Hemet (Calif.). If the Deboskie recruitment had a rival for its up-and-down aspect, this would be it. Stevens committed to UCLA earlier this month, then almost immediately had second thoughts. He went to Westwood a few days later and talked it over with the coaches and said he jumped the gun and no longer considered himself committed. However, he made it clear UCLA is still his top choice. He'll camp at USC this weekend, where a good performance could net him an offer, and if that is the case, all bets are off. Still, Stevens insists that even an SC offer won't necessarily mean he'll immediately favor the Trojans. But this recruitment is one to keep an eye on. Offered

Allen Carroll, 6-3, 290, Oakland (Calif.) McClymonds. Carroll is one of the best offensive linemen in Northern California, and he has double-digit offers. Big, physical and pretty athletic, the UCLA coaches were watching him closely at the Nike Camp at Stanford. He was one of their early offers and despite Cal being so close to home, he's looking at getting away from the Bay Area. He plays tackle for Mac, but knows that guard is his destination in college. Offered

Patrick Jamison, 6-5, 290, Chandler (Ariz.) Hamilton. Jamison has had an excellent spring and has racked up offers all over the country.  Along with Stevens, he was the top offensive lineman at the Nike Camp in Eugene.  UCLA is one of his top two schools along with nearby Arizona State.  His teammate, Glenn Love, signed with UCLA a year ago.  Offered

Dominic Galas, 6-2, 255, Modesto (Calif.) Central Catholic. Galas was the top offensive lineman at the Nike Camp in Palo Alto last month and the UCLA coaches were watching him closely.  He then came to the UCLA 1-Day Camp and was mixing it up all day, showing that despite his less-than-ideal size, he's got a mean and nasty streak.  Whether UCLA offers him or not remains to be seen, but he's said that he's very interested in the Bruins.

Vaughn Dotsy, 6-4, 355, Ventura (Calif.) St. Bonaventure. A mammoth lineman, Dotsy takes up a lot of space, and though he plays tackle for the Seraphs, he will be a guard in college. With Darrell Scott running behind him this fall, Dotsy will have a field day opening holes for Scott. At the L.A. Scout.com Combine, Dotsy showed that despite his size, he's athletic, running a 5.3 forty. UCLA and USC are two of his favorites, though he's not been offered by either yet.

A.J. Wallerstein, 6-3.5, 260, Canyon Country (Calif.) Canyon. Wallerstein is one of the best run-blockers in California and has been a mainstay in Canyon's rushing attack the past two years, starting 29 straight games at left guard for their vaunted running game. Wallerstein may also be the smartest lineman in the state, being an outstanding student. He's been to Junior Day, the One-Day Camp and to UCLA practices, but Stanford is the team to beat.

Other Linemen Of Note:

Barrett Jones, 6-5, 270, Cordova (Tenn.) Evangelical Christian Offered
Alec Johnson, 6-4, 295, Denver (Colo.) Mullen
Max Tuioti-Mariner, 6-3, 290, Corona (Calif.)
Nick Cody, Brush Prairie (Wash.) Hockinson
Ryan Dannewitz, 6-6, 280, San Jacinto (Calif.)
Khaled Holmes, 6-5, 290, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei
Kevin Murphy, 6-7, 255, San Clemente (Calif.)


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