Recruiting Reset: Offense

As the spring evaluation period inches closer in the coming weeks, BRO takes a look at some of UCLA's top targets on the offensive side of the ball...

With Spring Practice starting last week, and the evaluation period beginning later this month, the UCLA coaching staff can focus more on recruiting the 2011 class.  Several top prospects are expected to come to Spaulding Field in the next few weeks to check out the Bruins in Spring Practice, and several have already been in attendance in week one.  The coaches will then hit the road to recruit following spring ball.  Right now, we're hearing they'll have between 14-17 scholarships to give.

UCLA stocked up on the defensive side of the ball in the 2010 class while emphasizing offensive recruits with the 2009 class. The 2011 class could be evenly weighted between offensive and defensive recruits.

Here is a look at who UCLA will likely be targeting for the 2011 class.

QUARTERBACKS

UCLA needs a quarterback in the class of 2011, there is no way around it.  With their loss of a QB in the 2010 class, it emphasizes the need even more.  So UCLA will undoubtedly bring in one, and more than likely two, in this class. 

Brett Hundley, 6-2, 205, Chandler (Ariz.).  The top quarterback in the West in the 2011 class, Hundley has a cannon for an arm, and has really seen his recruitment take off in the past couple of weeks.  He already boasted a number of offers, but since a strong showing at the Steve Clarkson Dreammaker Academy, he catapulted himself even more.  UCLA was one of the schools who offered him, but the Bruins will have to work against several schools, notably Arizona, where his father played, and hometown Arizona State.  Offered. 

Braxton Miller, 6-3.5, 200, Huber Heights (Ohio) Wayne.  Ranked as the #1-quarterback in the country by Scout.com, UCLA is one of only two schools in the Pac-10 that Miller is even considering, but even then, it's probably a longshot at best to consider him realistic.  All the national powers have offered, and the feeling is that he'll be staying in the Midwest.  Offered. 

Max Wittek, 6-3, 200, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei.  Wittek is originally from the East Coast and has several offers from the ACC and SEC.  UCLA was one of the first schools to offer him, though, and his good friend is Chris Ward, who's coming in the fall.  But USC offered Wittek too, and USC has had the market cornered on Mater Dei quarterbacks traditionally.  Still, the Bruins are going to push for Wittek.  Offered. 

Kiehl Frazier, 6-3, 215, Springdale (Ark.) Shiloh Christian.  A big, strong-armed passer from Arkansas, Frazier can absolutely sling it.  He's got offers from most of the Southwest and SEC schools, and he's ranked as one of the top five quarterbacks nationally.  UCLA is very much in the mix for Frazier and is hoping to get him out for an unofficial visit either in late spring or summer.   Offered. 

Stephen Rivers, 6-6, 200, Athens (Ala.).  UCLA has been recruiting Rivers pretty heavily for some time, and while it's not common for them to be in the mix for a quarterback from the Southeast, the Bruins have a connection with offensive coordinator Norm Chow having coached Rivers' older brother, Phillip, when he was a freshman at NC State.  Also in UCLA's favor is that the older Rivers is just down the road in San Diego and Stephen has said coming out West, and being near his brother, is not out of the question.  He took an unofficial visit to UCLA last month that reportedly went very well.  Offered. 

Jerry Neuheisel, 6-1, 175, Los Angeles (Calif.) Loyola.   While the connection with Rivers is strong, its obviously much greater with Neuheisel, the oldest son of Bruin coach Rick Neuheisel. There is some speculation that he may end up walking on, or what's most likely is that he'll greyshirt and be counted as part of the 2012 class. so quarterbacks coming in with the 2011 class -- and there will probably be two of them -- won't feel they're competing with the coach's son.   Offered. 

Cody Kessler, 6-2, 195, Bakersfield (Calif.) Centennial.  One of the premier passers out West, Kessler is getting recruiting attention from all over the country, with Pittsburgh and Alabama two of the schools who've offered him.  A phenomenal athlete (Kessler averaged almost 30 points a game on the hardwood), his future is on the gridiron.  Kessler will camp at UCLA this summer, and he's interested in the Bruins, but they'll have to offer him soon to stay in the mix, given his list of schools.   

Kyle Boehm, 6-3, 205, San Jose (Calif.) Archbishop Mitty.  The top quarterback prospect in NorCal, Boehm has a handful of offers, including a trio from the Pac-10, and will likely add to that number as the spring and summer go on.  He camped at UCLA last spring, and will likely be camping there again come June, which could determine if he lands a Bruin offer.   

Other Quarterbacks to watch:
Brock Berglund, 6-3, 190, Highlands Ranch (Colo.) Valor Christian
Evan Crower, 6-3, 185, San Diego (Calif.) St. Augustine
Brett Smith, 6-2, 195, Salem (Ore.) West Salem
Michael Eubank, 6-5, 220, Corona (Calif.) Centennial
Trevor Gretzky, 6-2.5, 195, Westlake Village (Calif.) Oaks Christian
Aaron Cantu, 6-2, 185, Montebello (Calif.) Schurr
Michael Bercovici, 6-1, 200, Woodland Hills (Calif.) Taft
Christoph Bono, 6-2, 180, Palo Alto (Calif.)
Jake Geringer, 6-2, 204, Newbury Park (Calif.)
Chad Jeffries, 6-3, 195, Glendora (Calif.)

RUNNING BACKS

With the haul that they pulled in last February, getting Malcolm Jones and Jordon James, and then Anthony Barr for good measure, running back isn't a priority for the UCLA staff.  They've only offered two, and they'll take an elite one in this class if he wants to come, but it's not as pressing as the other positions.

DeAnthony Thomas, 5-10, 175, Los Angeles (Calif.) Crenshaw.  "The Black Mamba" is the top prospect in the West in the class of 2011, and he's an electric player, who can pretty much do it all.  Running back might not be where he ends up in college- he could play corner, safety or even slot receiver, but he'll get a chance to do things with the ball in his hands.  UCLA is a school he's pretty familiar with, and they were one of the first schools to offer him, but USC is sitting in a good place with him.  Offered. 

Harvey Langi, 6-2, 215, South Jordan (Utah) Bingham.  The top prospect in Utah this year is one of the best power backs in the country.  Very similar to Malcolm Jones, but bigger, Langi runs with strength but is deceptively fast.  He was the MVP of the Miami Nike Camp last month and was one of the standouts at the Las Vegas Badger/New Level 7on7.  BYU and Utah will be tough to beat for Langi, especially the Cougars, who've done a great job recruiting Bingham, but UCLA will keep trying.  Offered.  

Other Running Backs to watch:
Shon Carson, 5-9, 195, Lake City (S.C.)
KaDeem Carey, 5-10, 180, Tucson (Ariz.) Canyon Del Oro
Maika Polomalu, 6-0, 200, Pottstown (Penn.) Pottsgrove
Tevin Williams, 6-0, 190, Euless (Texas) Trinity
 

RECEIVERS

With Paul Richardson the lone receiver UCLA signed in February, the Bruin staff will be hitting the prep ranks hard to find a couple of receivers, and could bring in as many as three.  All three of their top receivers will be juniors, so playing time would be available by this class' second year in the program, at the latest.  The Bruin staff has already offered nine receivers in this class.

Victor Blackwell, 6-2, 195, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei.  The Bruins would love to land the pass-catch combo of Wittek and Blackwell.  The four-star receiver is one of the premier playmakers in the West, and the Bruins are heavily in the mix for Blackwell, who's also very high on Cal.  UCLA is hoping to make it two years in a row getting a player from Mater Dei, and Blackwell would be a nice prospect to make it consecutive years.  Offered.  

Junior Pomee, 6-3, 215, Moreno Valley (Calif.) Rancho Verde.  Pomee is a stronger version of Morrell Presley.  He's not as fast as Presley, but they're eerily similar players, both being TE/WR types, who are best with the ball in their hands.  Pomee starred in Vegas at the 7on7 tournament, and impressed Neuheisel, who was there to watch his son, and ended up with a Bruin offer just a couple days later.  Pomee said that UCLA has been his favorite school for years.  Offered.  

Devon Blackmon, 6-1, 180, Fontana (Calif.) Summit.  Another stellar prospect from the Inland Empire, Blackmon was verbally offered by the UCLA coaches last summer and received his official offer from UCLA earlier this month.  The Bruin staff is doing well with him, but as his tape has made the rounds, his recruitment has really taken off, with Florida, Alabama and LSU offering as well as USC.  So UCLA will have to work for the versatile Blackmon.  Offered.  

George Farmer, 6-2, 197, Gardena (Calif.) Serra.  For the second straight year, Serra has California's top receiver, but for the second straight year, that player, in this case Farmer, is likely going to end up a Trojan.  Farmer has made no bones about the Trojans being his leader, and while UCLA has offered, Farmer is pretty much a lock for the Trojans.   Offered.  

Kasen Williams, 6-2, 195, Sammamish (Wash.) Skyline.  The top-ranked receiver nationally by Scout.com, Williams was offered by UCLA verbally when he was a freshman, thanks to jumping on to the scene that year, and because he goes way back with Neuheisel's son, Jerry.  Most of the country has offered, but the son of a former Washington Husky will probably keep the family tradition going.  Offered.  

DeAnthony Arnett, 6-0, 170, Saginaw (Mich.).  A smaller, speedy receiver, Arnett is different than a Farmer or Williams, who are bigger and stronger, and he's more likely to play in the slot.  He's got offers from all over the country, with USC being one of them, and they're thought to be the favorite school from the West Coast collection.    Offered.  

Hakeem Flowers, 6-3, 180, Greenville (S.C.) Hampton.  Another receiver with a Who's Who list of offers, Flowers is a bigger, faster receiver, who's also a track star.  Surprisingly, he's not looking at the two in-state schools, Clemson and South Carolina, all that much.  He'll be tough to grab, but the Bruins are trying.  Offered.  

Dominique Terrell, 5-11, 180, Manassas (Va.) Osbourn Park.  One of the better two-way players in the country, Terrell is actually projected by Scout.com to play cornerback, but he can play slot receiver, and play it well.  Most of his offers come from the ACC and the SEC, but the Bruins, and Oregon, are two West Coast schools he's seriously considering.  Offered. 

Josh Turner, 5-11, 180, Oklahoma City (Okla.) Millwood.  Another two-way prospect, who's also able to play cornerback and receiver in college, Turner's offer from the Bruins is as a receiver.  But he'll be hard to pull out of Big 12 country, with hometown Oklahoma in the top three with Missouri and Texas.  Offered.  

Devin Lucien, 6-2, 195, Encino (Calif.) Crespi. One of the better receivers in the Southland, Lucien has really shined during the offseason, at various camps, namely the U.S. Army Combine, the Badger 7on7 and the FBU Camp in Tucson, where he was MVP.  He's a strong, physical receiver, who is deceptively fast and will not hesitate to go into traffic for a tough catch.  Oregon is his dream school but he also likes UCLA, and he works out with former Crespi quarterback Kevin Prince in the offseason.  

Other Receivers to watch:
Blair Holliday, 6-1, 185, Westlake Village (Calif.) Oaks Christian
Antoine Arnold, 6-4, 200, Temecula (Calif.) Chaparral
Chance Early, 6-1, 185, San Diego (Calif.) Cathedral Catholic
David Richards, 6-2, 190, Palmdale (Calif.)
Jamaal Jones, 6-1, 175, Graham (Wash.) Graham-Kapowsin
Jemond Hazely, 6-1, 180, Corona (Calif.) Santiago
 

TIGHT ENDS

UCLA would like to add at least one tight end to the mix, but won't be graduating anyone this year, so more than one isn't really necessary.  They've offered two so far.

Austin Seferian-Jenkins, 6-6, 235, Gig Harbor (Wash.).  The top tight end prospect in the West, Seferian-Jenkins is one of the top 10 recruits in the West in the 2011 class, and has the offer sheet to back it up.  He's said often that UCLA is his favorite school, and at worst, they're one of his top schools, along with Florida, Miami and Oklahoma, who he also likes.  And you can't count out the homestate Huskies for him.  Seferian-Jenkins camped at UCLA last summer and plans to do the same this summer.  Offered. 

Brian Miller, 6-4, 215, Andover (Mass.).  Not only is Miller a good player, he's also a good student, with offers from several academic powerhouses.  Miller is pretty wide open and UCLA is one of the more recent schools to offer him.  Offered. 

Dillon Van Der Wal, 6-6, 240, Westlake Village (Calif.) Oaks Christian.  Van Der Wal is one of SoCal's best tight ends, and he's also a pretty good defensive end to boot.  He's been more productive on defense, but he projects to offense in college, and this year figures to be a big part of the Oaks passing game.  He's got offers from Baylor and Minnesota, but UCLA is a schools he's very serious about and he was at the Bruins' Junior Day in February. 

Troy Niklas, 6-5, 242, Anaheim (Calif.) Servite.  Niklas may be the best tight end in California in the 2011 class, and he's attracting offers from around the country.  He had an injury-riddled junior season, but that was coming on the heels of a strong sophomore year.  Niklas could end up camping at UCLA this summer, and he's definitely on the Bruins' radar. 

Raymond Nelson, 6-5, 215, Modesto (Calif.) Modesto Christian.  The younger brother of UCLA basketball player Reeves Nelson, the younger Nelson was an all-state defensive end in 2009 after helping lead Modesto Christian to the CIF State Small Schools title.  He wants to play offense in college, though, and he's a nice, big rangy target.  UCLA is a school he'd love to play at, especially with his brother there, but he's also interested in Fresno State because of proximity to home, and USC, who he grew up rooting for. 

Other Tight Ends to watch:
Wallace Gonzalez, 6-5, 215, La Puente (Calif.) Bishop Amat
Max Stevenson, 6-6, 215, Spring (Texas) Klein Oak

OFFENSIVE LINE

UCLA will look to sign at least three offensive linemen in this class.  Only three seniors are in the two-deep along the offensive line, but the Bruins want to continue to build depth in the trenches.  The offers to offensive linemen are in the double-digits.  What's key, though, is that only one of their offers have gone to a California prospect, but not surprising, since it's a down year for California linemen.

Paulay Asiata, 6-5, 285, Honolulu (Hawaii) Word Of Life.  Asiata is Hawaii's top prospect, and UCLA is hoping to make it three years in a row of landing a big boy from the Islands.  Asiata is one of the top three linemen in the West too, and can play tackle or guard.  UCLA is a school he's very high on.  Offered. 

Christian Westerman, 6-5, 295, Chandler (Ariz.) Hamilton.  UCLA will have a real hard time getting Westerman, who's got offers from all the powers that be, and the feeling is that if he were to leave Arizona to play anywhere else in the Pac-10, that place would be USC.  And with offers from Texas and Alabama in the mix, UCLA is pretty far down the list for him.  Offered. 

Cyrus Hobbi, 6-3, 285, Scottsdale (Ariz.) Saguaro.  On the other hand, UCLA is doing well with Hobbi, who's good friend and Saguaro teammate Kody Innes signed with the Bruins in February.  Hobbi is part of a stellar linemen trio from Arizona, and schools all over are noticing as Alabama, Notre Dame and Oklahoma are some of the national programs who've offered.   Offered. 

Andre Yruretagoyena, Scottsdale (Ariz.) Chaparral.  Forget the impossible to spell last name, Andre can play.  Any other year, he may be the best OL in Arizona, but with Westerman in front, he'll have to settle for a four-star ranking at #2.  His recruitment has blown up too, with double-digit offers, and UCLA is quite involved with him.  Offered. 

Brendon Austin, 6-6, 265, Parker (Colo.) Chaparral.  The top lineman prospect in Colorado, UCLA was one of the more recent schools to offer Austin, who's being recruited by several Midwest powers along with plenty of Pac-10 schools.  He's one of Colorado's few in-state offers, which makes him a huge priority for the Buffs, but the Bruins are going to try for him. Offered. 

Isaac Luatua, 6-3, 295, La Mirada (Calif.).  What's interesting about Luatua is he's the only California offensive lineman that UCLA has offered.  He's got some ties to UCLA too- his coach, Mike Moschetti, started at quarterback at Colorado for Neuheisel and his cousins are former UCLA linemen Shannon and Sonny Tevaga.  Plus Luatua likes the Bruins a lot, and has for some time.  Offered. 

Matthew Hegarty, 6-6, 260, Aztec (N.M.).  The best prospect to come out of New Mexico in years, and one of the highest rated since Landry Jones, Hegarty has been a name to remember for some time, and he's got offers from all the major programs.  UCLA offered him recently, but they'll have some catching up to do.  Offered. 

Spencer Drango, 6-6, 270, Leander (Texas) Cedar Park.  Drango just recently was offered by the Bruins, and while he doesn't know a whole lot about UCLA, he said he will now be checking them out and may come out and see Westwood.  Offered. 

Patrick Flavin, 6-7, 260, Lisle (Ill.) Benet.  Flavin just was offered by UCLA in the last few weeks, and he said it caught him by surprise, since he'd only recently sent film.  The offer came not too long after that and Flavin is now going to take a closer look at the Bruins.  Notre Dame is in a good place with him, though.  Offered. 

Sioasi Aiono, 6-4, 290, Covina (Calif.) South Hills.  One of the best linemen in Southern California, Aiono has a handful of offers but is hoping to get one from the two Los Angeles schools.  He was at UCLA's Junior Day and will also camp there this summer in hopes of an offer.  

Jordan Rigsbee, 6-5, 285, Chico (Calif.) Pleasant Valley.  Rigsbee is NorCal's top lineman and may be the top linemen in California.  He's got a ton of offers, though UCLA isn't one of them.  But Rigsbee said that UCLA has been picking up the pace with him.  Cal is likely the team to beat, with his brother, Tyler, playing for the Golden Bears, and his father, the former head coach at Butte CC (where he coached Aaron Rodgers), having a strong relationship with Jeff Tedford. 

Other Linemen to watch:
Anthony Zettel, 6-4, 255, West Branch (Mich.) Ogemaw Heights.  Offered. 
Kyler Kerbyson, 6-5, 290, Knoxville (Tenn.) Knoxville Catholic.  Offered. 
Antonio Richardson, 6-6, 285, Nashville (Tenn.) Ensworth.  Offered. 
Faitele Faafoi, 6-5, 300, Tustin (Calif.)
Bryan Peters, 6-5, 305, La Mirada (Calif.)
Kalvin Cusick, 6-3, 282, Provo (Utah) Timpview
Jacob Welter, 6-5, 280, Danville (Calif.) Monte Vista
Brian Farley, 6-7, 280, San Diego (Calif.) Patrick Henry
Brey Cook, 6-7, 298, Springdale (Ariz.) Har-Ber
Patrick Carroll, 6-5, 275, La Canada (Calif.) St. Francis
Brian Moran, 6-7, 305, Atherton (Calif.) Sacred Heart
A.C. Patterson, 6-2, 305, Las Vegas (Nev.) Bishop Gorman
 


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