Philipp on UCLA Game, Recruiting

San Bernardino (Calif.) Arroyo Valley's Michael Philipp, the #8-ranked offensive tackle in the nation, gave us his impressions after visiting a Pac-10 school for their game Saturday and then the UCLA game against Tennessee Monday...

San Bernardino (Calif.) Arroyo Valley offensive tackle Michael Philipp (6-4, 310) had a busy weekend, first going to Arizona to see his brother, who plays for the Wildcats, trounce Idaho.

"That game was crazy, I couldn't believe how bad the score was (70-0 for Arizona)," said Philipp. "But it was cool to go out there."

Then he was one of the many recruits who took in UCLA's win over Tennessee on Monday night, and it left a good impression on Philipp.

"I think it was a really good game," said Philipp. "UCLA is a good team and you can tell that it's because that have really good coaches. I know UCLA has really good coaches and I have respect for every coach on that staff."

Philipp sat with committed quarterback Richard Brehaut and linebacker Todd Golper, who both were in his ear during the evening.

"Richard and Todd, they were making little jokes at the game and telling me how I need to go ahead and commit already," said Philipp.

The coaches reiterated that to Philipp following the game. "In the locker room, Coach (Wayne) Moses and Coach (Norm) Chow were just telling me they would like me to come to UCLA, too. I talked with Coach (Bob) Palcic right before I left and he was telling me the same stuff," said Philipp.

So where do the Bruins stand for Philipp?

"I like UCLA and that is definitely one of the schools I'm looking at the most," said Philipp. "I like the Pac-10, though, and chances are good I'm going to be in the Pac-10."

But does Philipp have a team in the lead? He said: "I don't have a leader or even a top five right now, because I'm staying open. I'm hoping I will get to the Ohio State-USC game, but there are no promises."

Philipp said his next task is to set up his official visits. "I haven't set those up yet, but I need to," said Philipp. "I know most recruits haven't taken them yet. I've been thinking about where I want to visit and with Stanford and UCLA, I'd like to visit them, but I am going to try and get to schools I haven't seen. I maybe will save the last two for Stanford and UCLA, but if there is another school, I may visit there instead. That doesn't mean at all that Stanford or UCLA won't be in my top five, I just have already seen them enough."

Philipp said, ideally, he'd be making a decision in January, possibly as soon as the U.S. Army Game, but he also may wait. "It's looking like I may take some trips after the Army Game, so I don't know if I'd be able to commit then," said Philipp.

The top 10 player on the West Coast said, while most guys like to come in and play as a freshman, he's not opposed at all to redshirting.

"I would like to redshirt, maybe get used to the college life, how to balance my schoolwork and college football," said Philipp. "But if the coaches need me to play, I'll play."

This Friday, Arroyo Valley opens their season against Pasadena. "I'm strictly playing offense, but if something happens to one of our defensive tackles, I'll play some there," said Philipp.

Academically, Philipp is maintaining a 3.8 GPA in honors classes, and has a 1310 on the SAT, which he plans to retake to boost his score this fall.

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