As if we didn't have enough from BlueReign's excellent effort to analyze the stretch run to to signing day, Greg Biggins from WWL offers up more thoughts on the status of few recruits from the West who are subject to ferocious lobbying during these next few weeks. Biggins analysis includes comments on seven UCLA recruits. Here are his thoughts on Randall Carroll:
Randall Carroll, 5-11, 175 WR Cathedral (Los Angeles, Calif.)
Few players have been talked about as much recently as the USC commit. We haven't talked to anyone close to Carroll recently who feels he'll end up at USC. On Tuesday, we talked to Cathedral head coach Kevin Pearson who echoed those statements and said UCLA or Cal is where his athlete will end up.
Carroll has already visited Cal, will trip to UCLA this coming weekend and Arizona State the following weekend. There is also talk of a possible visit to Florida but I honestly can't see that happening. Everyone I've talked with has said Carroll wants to stay close to home but no one has gone out on a limb to say if it will be the Bruins or Bears. We should find out later this month.
Again Cal is the team to beat here we think. Moving on to Hasiak:
Stanley Hasiak, 6-6, 340 Kapolei (Hawaii)
Hasiak committed early in the process to UCLA but had always planned to take a few more trips. The lineman, who could be as talented as any lineman in the entire West region, committed to UCLA back on his official visit in October. He then visited Cal in November and said he will take January visits to Oregon State, Utah and USC.
The recruitment of Hasiak will be very interesting to follow. Although he sounds solid with the Bruins, USC should not be ruled out, especially after landing a commitment from his linebacker teammate Simione Vehikite. I still think Cal is a player here although I liked their chances more before, then offensive line coach, Jim Michalczik left for Washington. No matter when Hasiak announces, expect him to continue to be recruited all the way up to Signing Day.
Feeling good about Stanley. Checking in on Tepa, Pollard and Flournoy:
Iuta Tepa, 6-3, 230 DL Long Beach Poly (Calif.)
Tepa committed early to Hawaii and then saw his stock soar after a big senior season. Soon scholarships flooded in from all over and the talented rush end told us recently he no longer considers himself a commit but open to everyone recruiting him.
Tepa will visit Hawaii this coming weekend followed by visits to Oregon, Colorado and UCLA. I've heard from some of the Poly coaches that Oregon is the team to beat here but to also watch out for Washington. UCLA being the local school also has a great shot and I wouldn't rule out Colorado either. So basically, this race looks wide open.
Marlon Pollard, 6-0, 160 DB Cajon (San Bernardino, Calif.)
Pollard committed as a junior to UCLA and was the first recruit in the Bruins class of 2010. He then visited Notre Dame last summer and committed to the Irish a few weeks later. Now Pollard will take an official visit to UCLA this weekend and there has been talk in recent weeks that the corner could switch back to his original school.
Pollard has been one of the toughest players to reach this year so no one really knows what's going on with him. One thing I did hear was it was Pollard, late in the season, who initiated the contact with UCLA and asked to be re-recruited. Will he switch back to the Bruins? We should know very shortly but the feeling is there's better than a 50-50 chance he will.
De'von Flournoy, 6-1, 180 WR Birmingham (Van Nuys, Calif.)
Flournoy committed to USC shortly before Signing Day a year ago. He looked like one of the more solid commitments in the Trojans class but has now decided to take a few official visits. He tripped to Cal back in December and will head to UCLA this coming weekend.
Flournoy will likely visit USC as well and could also check out Oregon. Unlike Carroll, Flournoy does still have a sincere interest in the Trojans and I would put them as the leader but far from a slam dunk. The talented receiver said he loved his visit to Cal but the general feeling is UCLA has the best chance to steal Flournoy. He's very close with former teammate Milton Knox and said early playing time is at the top of his list among things he's looking for in a school.
Flipping any of them would be gravy.
Finishing with Maka and Sanders:
Taniela Maka, 6-1, 215 LB Jordan (Long Beach, Calif.)
Maka is one of the best and most underrated 'backers in the West. He committed early to Arizona and still looks solid for the Cats although he'll take several official visits this month. Maka's first trip will be this weekend to UCLA followed by trips to Hawaii, Washington and Arizona State. Maka's parents are pushing UCLA hard and would love to see their son stay local. The feeling is, if Maka leaves Westwood this weekend still committed to the Cats, he'll stick with his original commitment.
Billy Sanders, 6-4, 235 ATH Lake City (Coeur d'Alene, Idaho)
Sanders committed shortly after Signing Day to Miami last year, the first school to offer him. The plan was for Sanders to play tight end but he can also play defensive end. Sanders will in fact visit UCLA this weekend and the Bruins are recruiting the athlete as a defensive end.
At the time of his commitment, Sanders called the Canes his dream school and said that was the school he grew up wanting to play for. However in recent weeks, UCLA has not only made up ground but is now a heavy leader. In fact, it will be somewhat of a surprise if Sanders doesn't change his commitment while on his visit. I've also heard Sanders could graduate early and enroll in time for spring ball at the school of his choice.
Here is to hoping Sanders, Maka and rest of the recruits enjoying a beautiful weekend in Westwood.
Again it's been a while we have sensed this much energy and anticipation from the recruiting front.