UCLA Football: Bruins land 4-Star OL Chris Murray

PHOENIX, AZ - DECEMBER 26: Wide receiver Jordan Lasley
PHOENIX, AZ - DECEMBER 26: Wide receiver Jordan Lasley /

Chip Kelly landed a key recruit at a position of need on Saturday afternoon, as 4-star offensive lineman Chris Murray (Santa Ana, CA/Mater Dei) announced his commitment to UCLA football during NBC’s national telecast of the Army All-American Game.

With offensive line continuing to be a thin position that causes Bruin fans anxiety heading into the early stages of the Chip Kelly Era, the Bruins OL depth chart got a much-needed shot in the arm when four-star offensive lineman Chris Murray committed to UCLA on Saturday afternoon.


Listed at 6-foot-3 and 300 pounds, Murray is one of the highest-rated interior offensive line prospects in the country. He’s an athletic, mobile blocker who fits Chip Kelly’s presumed scheme very well with his ability to pull and get to the second level.

Murray’s recruitment had seemed sewn up for Stanford for a long time, so coming from behind in the recruitment to pull off a shocker is a fantastic coup for the Bruins. For UCLA, the addition of Murray is the second of what it hopes will be a few new offensive linemen to join the Bruins in the 2018 class, most notably four-star tackle Jarrett Patterson (Mission Viejo, CA/Mission Viejo).

Murray was likely attracted to UCLA football not only for the scheme that would allow him to display his most notable talents as a lineman. He likely also found attractive the wide open depth chart at UCLA which, given the departures of Kolton Miller, Scott Quessenberry, Kenny Lacy, and Najee Toran, has an absolutely glaring need for interior linemen, meaning Murray very well could garner considerable playing time and possibly even start as a true freshman.

Stanford has been a general thorn in UCLA football’s side for a while, so the recruitment of a coveted lineman will be no different and the Bruin staff will not be able to rest on its laurels. It will have to continue to work actively to keep Murray in the fold and away from the Cardinal until his Letter of Intent comes into the Wasserman Center on Wednesday, February 7, which is the first day of the Late Signing Period.

In addition to adding a quality recruit like Murray to the 2018 class, offensive line coach Hank Fraley will also be hoping that the successful recruitment of Murray from Mater Dei, a school traditionally far friendlier to USC than UCLA football, is a harbinger of things to come in future classes. With the Monarchs being traditionally loaded on the offensive line, the presence of former Bruin offensive lineman Chris Ward on the Mater Dei staff as the offensive line coach there can only be a boon to those future efforts, as Fraley attempts to convince more highly-coveted linemen to follow the same path Ward did as a recruit, from Mater Dei to UCLA.

Next: UCLA Football: Is the Pac-12 South UCLA’s for the taking?

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Welcome to Westwood, Chris!