UCLA Offers 2009 Linebacker

Todd Golper, the 6-1, 225-pound junior linebacker/fullback prospect from Arcadia, got some big news Monday. He talked to us about getting a scholarship offer from UCLA, and how it went down with Coach Rick Neuheisel and Coach DeWayne Walker...

Arcadia (Calif.) linebacker Todd Golper (6-1, 225) had been eagerly awaiting his first scholarship offer. To get it from the school he grew up cheering for made it even sweeter.

"UCLA offered me (Monday night)," said Golper. "I'm pretty excited that they offered me. I called Coach (DeWayne) Walker and he asked, ‘How'd you like to be a Bruin?' and he just went on from there. Then he handed the phone to Coach (Rick) Neuheisel and he said ‘You're definitely a player on both sides of the ball that we want.'"

For Golper, one of the top linebackers in a deep and loaded class in California for 2009, it was pretty thrilling.

"Yeah, I was speechless," Golper said. "He just asked me some things, made sure my SAT score was up, and my GPA was good. All I could say was, ‘Thank you so much.' It was cool talking to Coach Neuheisel. He's got a good personality and he was making my mom laugh. We're all pretty excited. My brother was going nuts."

Golper had been seen in person by Walker on numerous occasions, with his son Kevan a teammate of Golper's at Arcadia. "Kevan told me to call his dad as soon as I could, and I asked why, and he said to just do it. I was pretty nervous because I had a feeling that's what it was for. So I called him and that's when he offered," said Golper. "Obviously Coach Walker knows how much I want to go to UCLA."

And it may not be the last, as Oregon and Stanford have both been in serious contact with him, requested recent film and transcripts, and have seen him when visiting the Arcadia campus. "Things are starting to pick up," said Golper.

Still, despite the offer from the Bruins, Golper isn't too rushed to make a decision. "They didn't put any pressure on me when I called. They told me how much they wanted me but to take my time," said Golper. "I didn't commit but I'm definitely high on UCLA."

Golper was told that he could expect a written offer from the Bruin coaching staff following Signing Day. "For this to be my first offer is pretty awesome," said Golper. "They didn't really say what position, I could play either fullback or linebacker. But linebacker just came to me this year. I think the light bulb just went on."

It did come on for Golper, and pretty impressively, in his junior season. He earned First Team all-state underclass honors and was named the Pacific League Defensive Player of the Year. He finished the season with 122 tackles, 11 sacks, nine tackles for loss, nine quarterback hurries, four forced fumbles and two interceptions, both which he returned for scores. Offensively, he had 30 receptions for 528 yards and six touchdowns.

Academically, Golper has a 3.5 GPA and scored a 1630 on the SAT, though he wasn't satisfied with the score on his first attempt and will take it again in the spring.

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