Throughout the summer, we’ve been taking a hard look at the prospective 2013 UCLA football class. We’ve already checked out 2013 OL Nico Falah (set to make his decision anytime now), RB Pierre Cormier, OLB commit Myles Jack, and WR Richard Benjamin.
We continue our awkwardly-long stare at this recruiting class by checking out OLB Kevin Palma out of Tulare, CA (although it’s important to note that Palma also started at TE in high school, but he is primarily being recruited as an outside linebacker). He also seems to be flying under the radar here, since UCLA is the only legit college football program (outside of Colorado) that has offered, and only one of two Pac-12 schools to extend an offer to him.
The essentials? He’s a 3- to 4-star recruit (according to ESPN and Scout, respectively), is 6’2” and weighs in at nearly 250 pounds. Although he’s primarily recruited as an OLB, he also seems to have the ability to play tight-end at the college level too, according to scouting reports.
Before we get to those, though, a highlight tape:
This is an eclectic mix-tape; dude got a good mix between tight-end and linebacker in the video. Of course, based on this impression, he seems to wrap the ball-carrier really well and has nice hands. But highlight tapes, mind you, won’t show drops or missed tackles.
So what do the scouting reports say? They agree that he’s versatile as hell. The reports also say that he’s a legitimate “edge rusher,” a crucial attribute because UCLA will run a 3-4, and outside linebackers are meant to be serious playmakers. Even further, the reports rave on about his route-running abilities as a tight-end, calling him a “smart” route-runner, while also complimenting his hands and ability to make catches in traffic.
Overall, the dude seems to be a legitimate top prospect. We’re sure he is, and he just hasn’t gotten the attention he deserves. Regardless, he fits in a number of ways, and he’ll be an interesting prospect for UCLA to continue to goad into dressing in Bruin Blue and Gold in 2013.