UCLA Shows Interest In JC DT

Having a physically dominant interior defensive lineman who can take up blocks while also getting pressure on the quarterback is every defensive line coach's dream. Compton College's Branden Warner (6-1.5, 280) is about as athletic as it gets when you talk about defensive tackles and he's got the early offers to prove his abilities...

This story originally appeared on JCFootball.com

Warner enjoyed a big time prep career at Ben E. Mays High School in Atlanta, Georgia, but he missed qualifying out of high school so he signed with Tuscalum, a D-2 school in Tennessee. After redshirting in 2006, he decided he wanted to try and play D-1 ball and had some friends who knew the Compton program would be a good fit for him, so he headed west.

"Coach (Jason) Brown gives it to you straight and he doesn't pull any punches," Warner told JCFootball.com recently. "He wants you to get better and be the best you can be, both in the classroom as well as on the field, so he's someone I like playing for."

As a freshman for the Tartars in 2007, Warner posted over 50 tackles, two forced fumbles and a fumble recover. However, it's his lack of sacks that had him working hard this summer.

"That was frustrating because I know I can get to the quarterback," Warner said. "This year I want to get after the QB more and I think that will happen."

Warner has freakish athleticism for a young man his size. He benches 420 pounds, he squats 530 pounds and he claims a 4.78 forty time.

"I've always had speed since I was little," Warner said. "It isn't always about speed though. It's about your agility and your quickness and your 'get off' and that's what I've been focused on. I was doing explosive movements and just working on things like that."

On the recruiting front, Warner already has six offers and plenty of other programs watching his every move.

"Oregon, Louisville, Michigan State, UNLV, New Mexico and Arizona all offered me during the spring and in the summer," Warner said. "Pretty much everyone else you can think of has sent me letters or talked to me and let me know they will be watching me this fall.

"Of the ones I've talked to the most, Oregon State, Cal, UCLA, South Florida, Arizona State, Hawaii, Kansas State and Kansas are the ones that seem the most interested, but really it's all sorta up in the air with that stuff."

Warner said he hopes to get some visits in during the season and he plans to visit at least one school during his bye week (Oct. 11th).

"I'm not sure who my visits will be with," Warner said. "Me and coach Brown have to sit down and talk about that stuff."

Warner is on pace to graduate in December and, because he redshirted in 2006, he'll have two years to play two wherever he ends up.

Branden Warner Scout Profile

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