BOOM! The U.C.L.A. Bruins just got a commitment from the top running back in the nation.
Sotonye "Soso" Jamabo, a 5* RB from Plano West HS in Plano TX outside Dallas announced this morning on ESPNU that he's going to be a Bruin!
Five-star running back Soso Jamabo has committed to UCLA over Texas. Back-to-back crucial commits to start Signing Day. An impressive start.— Ryan Kartje (@Ryan_Kartje) February 4, 2015
Texas' No. 1 player and the nation's No. 4 overall running back, Soso Jamabo has announced his commitment to #UCLA.— Edward Lewis (@EdwardLewisBSR) February 4, 2015
That's not bad considering some West Coasters haven't even had breakfast yet. They better share some coffee with Coach Kennedy Polamalu for this one. This was a back and forth battle between U.C.L.A. and Texas until Coach Kennedy Polamalu's in-home visit with Jamabo last week closed the recruitment. The UCLA Bruins already have a very talented running back unit with some good depth, but that didn't scare off the 5* from out-of-state. Jamabo had offers from virtually every major college program including Alabama, Southern Cal, Oregon, Ohio State, and Notre Dame.
Jamabo is ranked 5* by Rivals, Scout, and 247, and Scout ranks him as the top running back in the country. He is listed at 6-2 and 201 and runs a cool 4.5 40 yard dash. You can see his Rivals profile here, his Scout profile here, and his 247 profile here.
Here are Jamabo's senior highlights from Hudl
Jamabo shows great patience and the nquickness to the hole, excellent vision that gets him better angles and through would-be tacklers, and then break away speed to get downfield once he hits the second level of the defense. Jamabo is playing against the top football talent in Texas, too, so his highlights are legit. He looks ridiculously smooth with the ball. One of the concerns about the Bruins offense has been the lack of that one big time playmaker who can make plays by himself and turn little gains into touchdowns. Perkins showed flashes of that last season and Jamabo shows a lot of potential to do the same.
The Bruins also have some quality depth at running back. Paul Perkins had a break out season in 2014 and is being bandied about in early Heisman watch lists for 2015. Nathan Starks showed huge potential as a power back as a true freshman. Steve Manfro will return as the change of pace back and Craig Lee is trying to work into the mix, and the Bruins also have a solid commit from RB Bolu Olurunfumni. But Jamabo is the kind of talent who can come in and compete for playing time right away, as the Bruins will want to get the ball in this kid's hands, and Coach Mora has never shied away from putting a true freshman in from day one.
This is an outstanding addition to the Bruins offense and lets hope Offensive Coordinator Noel Mazzone takes advantage of it. We've also seen how our running backs have really taken big steps with Kennedy Polamalu coaching them up, so I am fired up to watch this young man carry the rock for U.C.L.A. over the coming years.
Welcome to Westwood, Soso!