National Signing Day 2013 is just a few days away, and UCLA football, as we’ve noted in our Signing Day Primer, is on the verge of one of the program’s best recruiting classes in history.
As it is, the Bruins have a top-10 class. That’s not much of a debate now, with highly-touted defensive backs Johnny Johnson, Tyler Foreman, Tahaan Goodman and Priest Willis all committing within a few days of one another. That’s five total defensive back commits in a class that initially looked like it would bring in one or two to an already-ailing defensive backfield.
This crew joins the No. 1 offensive line class in the nation, too, with the Bruins bringing in seven offensive linemen, including highly-recruited big men such as Caleb Benenoch, Alex Redmond, and Kenny Lacy, among others.
Remarkably, this class could get better. How much better, though? Let’s take a look at the best-case scenario for the Bruins.
The best-case scenario would involve the retention of all but one commit of the few who are teetering on picking another school (i.e., “soft verbals”). It must be noted that one of these kids are likely must-go’s with 23 commits in the class already while five more could very well be on the way (more on that later) Here the kids most likely to decommit and commit elsewhere on Signing Day:
Cameron Judge, 4-star OLB. If there’s a player that’s likely headed elsewhere among UCLA’s commitments, it’s Judge. The Bruins are in desperate need of space with many spots filling up and Judge is strongly considering ASU anyway. The Bruins could push out Judge or Judge may fear being left out on Signing Day, and so losing him, though terrible, is probably expected and won’t damage this recruiting class.
Christian Morris, 4-star OL. This is probably a commit that UCLA would rather not lose due to space. With the offensive line being as thin as it is, and with the line being the most important aspect of any functioning, consistent offense, the Bruins could use a seven-man offensive line class, and Morris is likely one of the anchors of the group. It’s possible that he commits to Tennessee on Signing Day.
Myles Jack, 4-star LB. Jack had been rumored to be a soft verbal but recently affirmed his commitment. That said, there’s a tiny chance he still winds up staying in-state, opting to play for Steve Sarkisian at Washington in 2013, especially now that his primary recruiter at UCLA, Marques Tuiasosopo, is up north working with Sarkisian as his quarterbacks coach.
Another aspect to an ideal scenario would see the commitment of all of Eddie Vanderdoes, Asiianti Woulard, Kylie Fitts, Cornelius Elder, and Isaac Savaiinaea, all but one of which are consensus four-star recruits (save Vanderdoes, a five-star recruit). This is not out of the picture at all: Vanderdoes has been rumored to be leaning towards UCLA, Woulard has UCLA in his final list, Kylie Fitts wants to stay close to home and has yet to forget that he was pushed out of USC days before he was set to enroll, Cornelius Elder has strong interest with UCLA while Ohio State is the only other program in the running and Isaac Savaiinaea is considered to be a heavy UCLA lean.
This is all basic and this is all a rehashed version of our primer; indeed, there are only four other recruits on UCLA’s radar, and three do not have offers from the Bruins and the other is a three-star wide-out Kentucky commit. The above five, undecided recruits are UCLA’s primary targets.
It must be noted that it’s unfair to expect all five to commit. Even further, this class would be pretty large at around 27 if all things go according to plan and UCLA’s official roster, sans seniors is at 90, and we’re not sure how many walk-ons this team has. Expect some defections on that front, too.
Signing Day’s on Wednesday. Exciting times! Which commits do you think UCLA will miss out on?