2010 Prospect Paul Richardson

One of the best wide receivers in the 2010 class in the west is Paul Richardson, the 6-1, 170-pounder from Los Alamitos (Calif.) High. And luckily for the Bruins, Richardson has some pretty strong ties to the UCLA program...

Los Alamitos (Calif.) receiver Paul Richardson (6-1, 170) has some strong ties to the UCLA football program.

His father played receiver for the Bruins from 1987-1990, and one of his father's teammates was current Bruin receivers coach Reggie Moore. Who was the wide receivers coach at the time? Rick Neuheisel.

"I went up to their camp this summer and got to work with Reggie Moore," said Richardson. "I had met him before when my dad found out he was going to be coaching there. So we went up and worked there and then I met Coach Neuheisel. It's funny because Coach Neuheisel was my dad's position coach when he was at UCLA and Coach Reggie was one of his teammates and now they're recruiting me."

As Richardson has emerged as one of the top 2010 receiver prospects in the west, it's no surprise that the Bruins are recruiting him.

What was a surprise, at least to Richardson, was that UCLA offered him first.

Richardson said: "It was a surprise to be honest. I had gotten their letters and they had invited me up to the game against Stanford. When I got home from practice last week, there was a letter there from UCLA offering me a scholarship. I was excited and I was shocked and I was just smiling. I had gotten some letters from them, but the offer came out of nowhere."

His father also beamed with pride. "He was happy and it was real big for him that UCLA offered me," said Richardson. "Coach Moore was telling my dad that he knew he worked really hard when he played and he thinks I work really hard too."

While he has the first offer under his belt, with 16 months until he can sign a letter of intent, Richardson said he's open to all comers at this point.

"Honestly I don't really have a favorite school," said Richardson. "I like UCLA, but I also like Oregon, I'm interested in USC and then Florida, Florida State, Arizona State, Boise State and Colorado. I'm wide open. I have enough time to make decision. I don't want to commit too early and regret it. People are sending me tickets to games, and I want to check out some more of these schools."

Still, an early decision isn't out of the realm of possibility for Richardson, just not too early.

"I'd like to be able to take some visits, but as far as me waiting until I get to take all five of my trips, I don't know if I'll wait that long," said Richardson.

For now, Richardson maintains a top five of UCLA, USC, Oregon, Arizona State and Cal. Colorado, which has a commitment from his teammate and quarterback, Clark Evans, is also in the mix.

His father was recruited out of University High in Los Angeles in the mid-1980s, so Richardson has someone to talk with about the process. "We've talked about it a lot. Coaches will probably tell you some things and mean another. I understand. I need to be smart about my decision, talk to coaches, get a feel for them. I'm not just going to jump into a situation," said Richardson.

At 6-1 and 170, Richardson said he's not sure he's finished growing. "By next season, I want to be at 185 and by college, I should be about 190-195. I may get up to 6-3 or so," said Richardson.

Richardson had been a prospect to keep an eye on through his first two high school seasons, but it was his performance at the UnderArmour/Scout.com Combine in Los Angeles last spring that really catapulted him. Richardson was chosen to the All-Underclass Team at the combine, and had one of the best days of any receiver there.

"Everyone was telling me how I should go and see what I could do. I was just staying focused that day, and I had a really good day. It was a great experience," said Richardson.

The momentum has carried over into the season, too, as Richardson, Evans and senior receiver Daryl Jenkins have teamed up as one of the best pass-catch combos in the O.C., and have the Griffins at 7-0 with a huge win over Edison in their last game.

"It's been a great season, since we're unbeaten, but we're not done yet. We have a really good team and we're staying focused all the way through," said Richardson.

Through seven games, Richardson has 27 catches for 536 yards and a team leading 10 touchdown receptions.

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