UCLA Football Recruiting Update: Signing Day Eve Edition

Coach Mora was absolutely giddy when he heard Devin Fuller and Simon Goines were jumping on the UCLA Bandwagon.

One more day until signing day, and the class is beginning to take final form. Coach Mora had a huge weekend, landing 4* QB/WR Devin Fuller from New Jersey on Sunday and convincing mammoth 3* OT Simon Goines to come to Westwood on Monday. During the weekend, we have heard that Bryce Treggs, Aziz Shittu, Jordan Payton, Randall Goforth, and Seth Jacobs were all on campus as well.

It is yet to be seen where Fuller will play, but all signs point to him getting a shot at quarterback. Coach Mora pitched the Mike Vick connection early, which seems to have been masterful considering Fuller wears number 7 and lights up when talking about how Coach Mora indicated that he tailored the offense around Vick's skill set and could do the same for Fuller.

"Mammoth" is the only way to describe Goines. At 6'8, 295 lbs., he could easily get to 320 lbs. and still look thin. It may take some work with S&C Coach Sal Alosi to get Goines on the field, but the Texas product has a very high upside.

This week we did see Shannon Edwards flip to Fresno St. and Steven Lakalaka flip to Hawaii. They were both early commits to Coach Neuheisel, and we wish them the best going forward.


Quarterback

Status: Kevin Prince, Richard Brehaut and Nick Crissman will all be seniors next year, and Darius Bell has switched to WR, leaving Brett Hundley and Jerry Neuheisel as the only scholarship QBs on the roster past next season.

Commits: Devin Fuller; T.J. Millweard

Targets: None.

Outlook: We said early on the a QB was a must sign this season, and the coaching staff delivered. Fuller is the #3 rated QB by Scout, and his impressive list of offers included Alabama, Nebraska, Michigan, Florida St., TCU, and Ohio St. He visited UCLA a few weeks ago and appeared to have had a good time, but his commitment finally came after Greg Schiano bolted Rutgers for the NFL. THANKS, GREG!. Fuller wants to play QB, but he also appears to understand that his best shot at playing beyond the college ranks may be at WR, where he played during the Army All-Star Game.

Millweard's commitment really came as no surprise. Coach Mazzone previously pull him away from Virginia Tech, and was able to pry him away from ASU to Westwood. Millweard is a Texas product with good size (6'5 205 lbs.) and his tapes show good mobility. He's the #5 QB according to ESPN, and he certainly isn't coming in to ride pine. He'll undoubtedly redshirt next year and provide Brett Hundley and Fuller with some much needed competition in 2013.

Running Back

Status: Jonathan Franklin will be a senior next year, leaving Damien Thigpen, Malcolm Jones, Jordon James, and Steven Manfro at the position. Thigpen and James may end up in the slot, so we are not as deep here as one might think.

Commits: Paul Perkins; Tairen Owens; Fabian Moreau; Christian Powell

Targets: None.

Outlook: Perkins played at Chandler with Brett Hundley, and he is listed at a DB but allegedly recruited at RB. He's light (175 lbs.), so expect a red shirt if he sticks at RB. His tapes are impressive, and he definitely looks the part.

Moreau is probably a better receiver than runner, so expect him to be moved to the slot. He's a good but not elite athlete, and had offers from Boston College, Wake Forest, Vanderbilt, and Northwestern.

Owens was a prior Husky commit who flipped as soon as UCLA offered. At only 5'9 165 lbs., he's not a workhorse, but he is incredibly quick and electric with the ball in his hands. He reminds me of the playmakers that ASU have had recently, dynamic in special teams, passing game, and running game. He was supposed to take a visit last weekend but did not make it to campus, so keep an eye on him.

Another back to keep your eye on is Christian Powell. He committed as a FB after choosing between UCLA and CU, and there are some rumors swirling that Powell may be looking back to CU.

Wide Receivers

Status: The last two classes were thin at WR. Devin Lucien certainly has the potential to become a good WR, but the position needs to add depth quickly to facilitate Mazzone's wide open attack.

Commits: Taylor Lagace; Fabian Moreau

Targets: Bryce Treggs; Jordan Payton; Javon Williams; Malcolm Lewis; Randall Goforth; Kenny Walker

Outlook: Treggs is prospect that most fans are anxious to hear about. He, along with Payton are both Cal commits, but they're both looking around. Treggs apparently visited last weekend for the third time in two weeks. Now that the #CalGang has officially dissolved, perhaps Treggs' ties to Coach Yarber will be enough to pull him away from Cal. It's not clear that the new staff ever warmed to Payton, but the rumor is that he's still deciding between UCLA, UW, and Cal.

Williams visited last week and apparently had a great time. He's Hundley's former teammate at Chandler HS, and his 6'5 frame is similar to the outside receivers Mazzone utilized at ASU. He has offers from Arkansas and Oklahoma St., who know a thing or two about receiving talent, and he has supposedly made up his mind and is simply waiting until signing day to announce.

Lewis is a Miami commit and late addition to the target list. He took an official last week, but there isn't much information on how his visit went or whether he has received an offer or not.

Walker is a former #CalGang commit that is looking elsewhere. He is said to have nearly committed to UCLA during his official visit, but he visited UW last weekend and had a good time. Keep your eye out for him on signing day.

Taylor Lagace could end up at S or WR, and my guess is that his destination ultimately depends on how the class fills out. Scout lists him primarily at S while ESPN lists him primarily at WR, for whatever that's worth.

Goforth has been a longtime target, and he finally visited campus last weekend. He has the option between CB/WR, and scouts seem to be split regarding his best position.

Tight End

Status: Mazzone did not really use a TE at ASU, but I suspect that he might figure out a use after working with Fauria. John Young is the only TE on the roster for the foreseeable future, and a TE or two is a must if Mora wants to mix in some pro-sets as he has previously indicated.

Commits: Ian Taubler; Nate Iese

Targets: None.

Status: Taubler was an early commit who reopened his recruitment for a short time before confirming his commitment to UCLA. Iese has indicated that he was told he could be used in some TE sets.

Offensive Line

Status: Rick Neuheisel left the offensive in exponentially better shape than the condition it was in when he arrived. Jake Brendel, Ben Wysocki, Torian White, and Will Oliver were all able to red shirt this year. Xavier Su'a Filo returns this year, and Kody Innes, Alber Cid, Chris Ward, and Wade Yandall all have at least 2 years of eligibility remaining.

Commits: Lacy Westbrook; Colby Cyburt; Simon Goines; Alex Ceachir; Carl Hulick

Targets: Kyle Murphy; Jeremiah Poutasi; Max Tuerk; Jordan Simmons; Shane Brostek;

Outlook: This is one of the richest offensive line classes in the west in recent memory, and Coach Mora's recruiting changes are very apparent here, where only Westrbook remains from Coach Neuheisel's early commits.

Coach Klemm made quick work signing JC OT Alex Ceachir, who is already enrolled at UCLA. Ceachir was formerly targeted by Coach Klemm while he was at SMU.

Hulick was previously committed SMU. Like Ceachir, Hulick was targeted by Coach Klemm from his arrival. He's a 2* center from Esperanza HS listed at 6'3 280 lbs., and has a mean streak. If he doesn't see the field, he'll make the team better by his aggressiveness and tenacity during practice.

Cyburt visited Westwood committed shortly after his visit. He's a big guy who'll benefit a lot from a dedicated S&C program.

Goines flipped from Missouri and officially committed to UCLA. Like Cyburt, he probably won't look like the same guy after a year in the S&C program, but he has a lot of upside to go with his mammoth (6'8, 295 lbs.) frame.

Tuerk and Simmons are both USC commits, and although Coach Klemm has good relationships with both of them, we haven't made much headway.

Brostek is the son of former Husky C Bern Brostek. He doesn't play against Hawaii's top competition, but he certainly looks the part.

Defensive Line

Status: There is young talent on the roster. Cassius Marsh, Seali Espenesa, Brandon Willis, Kevin McReynolds, and Brandon Tuliaupupu all have at least two years of eligibility remaining on the inside, while Iuta Tepa, Owamagbe Odighizuwa, Keenan Graham, Wesley Flowers, and Sam Tai all have at least two years of eligibility remaining from the end position.

Commits: Ellis McCarthy; Nate Iese; Eli Ankou

Targets: Aziz Shittu

Outlook: McCarthy is one of the best DT's in the country and was my personal #1 target from the beginning of the year. McCarthy has a Brian Price-esque first step, but he's taller, leaner, and has more top end speed. He was said to have destroyed the Army All-Star Game practices, and I can't wait to get him on the field. He can play inside in a 4 man front or outside in a 3 man front. His commitment may also be a huge momentum swing with regard to new recruits.

Iese is a solid Sacramento product that may end up being a sleeper. He also plays some TE and has expressed his desire to play both ways, but his best position my be OLB.

Ankou is a Canadian native who has flown under the radar but is said to have been very impressive in the camp circuit. At 6'3 245, Ankou is supposedly athletic enough to play a hybrid DE/OLB spot, which could be crucial if Mora employs a multiple front defense.

Shittu has indicated that he wants to stay in California, but he has offers from all Pac-12 California teams and hasn't given a leader at this point. He's visiting Stanford this week, and I suspect that his recruitment will come down to Stanford, USC, and us after Cal's loss of Lupoi.

Linebacker

Status: Jordan Zumwalt, Erick Kendricks, and Isaiah Bowens all have multiple years of eligibility, but there is not much behind them.

Commits: Aaron Porter; Jeremy Castro; Kenny Orjioke; Nate Iese

Targets: Seth Jacobs; Salamo Fiso; Matthew Rowe

Outlook: Porter was an early commit who appears to remain solid. He flirted somewhat with Oklahoma, but is said to be solid. Orjioke may end up at DE, OLB, or S, which is a testament to his size and athletic ability.

Jacobs visited Westwood last week and apparently had a very good time. He has narrowed his finalists down to Oklahoma St., Arkansas, Colorado, and UCLA. He's not big (6'2, 215 lbs.), but he has great speed and athleticism and would be a huge addition to the LB corps.

Rowe and Fiso are both Long Beach Poly products who committed to ASU early. Coach Broussard has been working on them, but they're longshots at this point.

Secondary

Status: We have ran out of warm bodies in the secondary for two straight years due to injury. The staff has made a clear effort to rebuild the secondary, and it's showing by the sheer number of offers given out at these positions. It should be noted, however, that many of the commits may move to WR or LB.

Commits: Marcus Rios; Ishmael Adams; Kenny Orjioke; Taylor Lagace; Paul Perkins; Justin Combs; Trayvon Watson; Jerico Richardson

Targets: Randall Goforth; Bryan Harper

Outlook: The number of secondary recruits is less staggering now than it was before, but it gstill shows the depth of secondary talent in the west this year as well as indicates the amount of help the staff believes we need.

Technically, Orjioke was recruited as a linebacker but should be included in the list of commits here as well due to the fact that he has been promised a shot at competing for a safety position. Rios and Adams are both 4* DB's, but Rios is a long, lean CB while Adams reminds me of Tony Dye and has the body type to end up at safety. Lagace may end up at WR, and Perkins was allegedly recruited as a RB, but both of them are primarily listed as DB's.

Goforth, as indicated above, is a CB/WR that will likely end up in the biggest position of need. He's an ASU commit, but he did visit UCLA and he's a player to look for on signing day.

Harper was high on UCLA, but Oregon has made a late push and appears to be the favorite at this time.

Special Teams

K Ka'imi Fairbairn firmed up his commitment after wavering between UCLA and Cal.

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