A little interesting tidbit from the LA Times today, reporting that freshman safety Antwine Perez (2006 Rivals rank #29) will be transferring, citing lack of playing time and finding himself 3rd or 4th on the depth chart. They also report that freshman running back Stafon Johnson (2006 Rivals rank #18)is also considering transfer for similar reasons.
Hmmm...now I will admit that Pom Pom has totally outrecruited our a$$es since 2003, turning in top ranked incoming classes just about every year. But it seems that Pom Poms tentacles aren't wrapped around these kids as tightly as they were a few years ago, and promises of pro days, Heisman's, <cough> free rent <cough>, championships, <cough> free houses for Mom and Pops <cough>, are luring these unsuspecting and impressionable recruits, only to find themselves 3rd or 4th on the depth chart at their respective positions, and hence limited playing time. Even John David Booty, the nation's top QB recruit in 2003, who left high school early only to toil for 3 years as the ballroom dancer's understudy, had to bide his time on the pine before finally getting his chance this year. Allen Bradford (2006 Rivals #9), the #1 linebacker in the country last year, finds himself #3 on the depth chart as a safety. Rocky Hinds, one of the top QB recruits in the west in '04, is now playing for UNLV.
Apparently, what cheatie Peetie forgets to tell these kids is he can only field one QB, one tailback, 11 players on offense and 11 players on defense at a time. And now that Bush-gate and Jarrett-gate have got the NCAAs attention, there are probably a lot less "fringe benefits" at the Univ. of South Central. And unfortunately for these talented, promising recruits, they come to realize too late that they are not going to develop their skills riding the pine or playing special teams. One has to wonder when and if Marc Tyler, son of UCLA-great Wendell Tyler, will finally break through the depth chart at running back, where freshman C.J. Gable and Emmanuel Moody are #1 and #2.
One only has to look at Maurice Jones-Drew, who played full time from his freshman year through his junior year at UCLA, to see what playing time and experience does for you at the next level. I bet he's glad he made the choice he did a few years back!