The guys at BruinAuthority.com

Apr 232015
 

rb_1We encourage all fans of the UCLA football program to attend the UCLA Football Spring Showcase at the Rose Bowl on Saturday, April 25, 3015, at 10:00 a.m.

Why is it important? First, there will be a huge number of recruits at the event.  Second, Big time programs support their teams. If we want to be big time, we need our fans to support the program. Third, it is at the Rose Bowl and will be a great way to spend part of a Saturday at the most beautiful stadium in the country.  The temperature will be a perfect 70 degrees, and a stroll through downtown Pasadena afterwards for the Pasadena Farmers Market and then a little dinner will make it a spectacular day.

This is the culmination of a month of practices, and will include many new players, including the debut of superstar freshman quarterback, Josh Rosen. Parts of the 90 minute event will have a practice type of feel with drills, while other parts will have real game simulation with referees. We will be taking a particular interest in the quarterback competition – who will fill Bret Hundley’s shoes? This is the first time in a while that the players will be in the Rose Bowl with a crowd, and with family and friends watching. We hear the team is very fired up about it.

Do UCLA fans want a big time program? Here is what it takes. These are 2015 Spring Game attendance figures for some of the “Big Boys” this year:

Ohio State – 99,391 (no, that is not a typo)
Nebraska – 76,881
Alabama – 65,175
Auburn – 62,143
Penn State – 68,000
Michigan 60,000
UCLA – ??? – SHOW UP AND HELP MAKE IT HAPPEN!  (UPDATE: The official announced attendance was 8,738.)

STUDENTS
Students can get in FREE by showing their Student Card. You can also get a FREE shuttle ride to the event by signing up HERE.

SEASON TICKET HOLDERS
Season ticket holders can download FREE tickets to the event HERE. You need to log into your account and print tickets the same as a regular game. If you are also a Wooden Athletic Fund donor, You will have access to a special luncheon after the event (see below).

PREMIUM SEASON TICKET HOLDERS IN THE TERRY DONAHUE PAVILION
Premium seat holders in the Terry Donahue Pavilion will have assess to luxurious Club Seating on Level D for viewing the event. There will be food and drinks available. Also, you will have access to a special luncheon after the event (see below).  You can also get a FREE parking pass by calling your representative.

OTHER FANS
You can purchase tickets for $5.00 HERE. Revenue goes to help UCLA’s Operation Mend program. We wrote about Operation Mend last year in our UCLA War Heroes series HERE.  You can also show up and buy tickets at the event.

PARKING
General parking is $15. There is no golf course parking but all the general Rose Bowl lots will be open at 6:00 a.m.  Premium seat holders in the Terry Donahue Pavilion can get a FREE parking pass by calling their representative.

OTHER INFORMATION

The only working entrance will be Gate A (this is the main stadium entrance where the Court of Champions is located), which will open at 9:00 a.m.

The UCLA Football Fan Zone will be located INSIDE the Rose Bowl concourse area. We are hearing they are trying to line up as many vendors as possible for the Fan Zone, including a Dave and Busters booth with interactive games and FREE prizes.

The first 5,000 fans will get a FREE poster and program.

After the event you will be able to access the Rose Bowl field where you can meet the players and get autographs.

If you are a Wooden Athletic Fund donor or have premium seats in the Terry Donahue Pavilion, you are eligible for a FREE luncheon from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. We hear it will include a barbecue that will be catered by the San Pedro Brewing Company (owned by UCLA alum and huge Bruin fan, James Brown), an orchestra, the UCLA Marching Band, and members of the UCLA Spirit Squad. Beer too! You will also be able to meet Coach Mora and the rest of the UCLA coaching staff. Not to mention games, FREE Adidas gear, FREE UCLA tote bags, FREE WAF posters, and other prizes. Location is in the Rose Bowl Court of Champions, and check in is just inside of Gate A. Reservations are required and can be made HERE.  An interesting side note, music will be provided by the John Ramey Orchestra.  Ramey is the play-by-play man for UCLA baseball, and his orchestra plays before every UCLA football home game in the Ralph’s Ultimate Tailgate Zone.

And finally, we hope all Bruin fans will encourage others to attend this event. SPREAD THE WORD! Bring your entire family. Bring your friends. Bring your neighbors. If you want, you can just send or post the link to this page. If UCLA fans have aspirations to join the Club of the Big Boys, we need to support events exactly like this. Mora is doing his job, we need to do ours.

Besides, it will be a great day for you and your family to meet the coaches, the players, and other fans who love the program just like you do!

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Apr 202015
 

CHECK OUT BRUIN AUTHORITY’S UCLA FOOTBALL SPRING SHOWCASE PRIMER HERE!

SOTONYE “SOSO” JAMABO UPDATE

Update 4/23/2015
The Kemp police are moving forward and will file their case on Jamabo with the Kaufman County District Attorney’s office next Thursday, 5/1/2015. The charge remains “evading arrest” which is serious. It is a felony that can have a sentence of from six months to two years in jail and a $10,000 fine.

An interesting update is that the Kemp police chief promised he would release the dash-cam video of the event on Monday. Monday came and went, and the video has yet to be released to this day.

It was originally reported that Jamabo was driving a 2007 extended cab tan Ford truck traveling at a “high rate of speed” which is why the officer tried to pull him over. The actual speed he was measured at was 79 in a 70 mph zone. After police attempted to pull him over he continued to drive another three miles before stopping at the King’s Creek Golf Course.

Original story

From our sources, research, and a little speculation, this is what we believe happened Saturday night.
jamabos

Saturday was Jamabo’s prom night. It is believed he was on a double date and the incident happened about one hour’s drive from the location of the prom where they were picking up one of the dates. Because of the distance and that they had not even changed for the prom yet, they were in a hurry. Too big of a hurry. He was also making some poor decisions – alcohol was later found in the car. Jamabo was spotted speeding by a Kemp, Texas police officer at 7:20 p.m. When the officer attempted to pull Jamabo over, he evidently tried to evade the officer.

We surmise that he panicked. He is a local hero and a football player with a bright future. He was speeding, he may have been intoxicated (alcohol was found in the car), and while evading the police, unknown substances were tossed out of the car. The last thing he wanted was to be stopped by a police officer at that moment. So instead of pulling over as he should have done, he panicked and continue driving. The police report states that he ran a red light and drove recklessly during the short pursuit.

So we have a case where several bad consecutive decisions were made by a high school senior who may have been associating with the wrong people.

He was charged with the felony of evading arrest and released on bail set at $7,500 at 4:30 p.m. Sunday. There was no sobriety test given to Jamabo.

Our thoughts: By all accounts, Jamabo is a model citizen, notwithstanding this incident. We could find no evidence of other arrests or any anti-social behavior whatsoever. In fact, he seems to be a very popular young man, liked by fellow students, teachers, and coaches at his high school. As a Nigerian, Jamabo became close friends with fellow Nigerian UCLA recruits, Bolu Olorunfunmi, and Josh Wariboko. It is believed by Bruin Authority that these three have the potential to begin a recruiting pipeline for players of Nigerian ancestry.

As for UCLA, we believe that if Jamabo is convicted of a felony, it is highly unlikely that he ever steps foot on the UCLA campus. However, if charges are dropped or reduced to a misdemeanor, we suspect UCLA will allow him to enroll since he has no prior history of this kind of behavior, and it happened before he was a UCLA student. Also, while it is a serious charge, it is not based on violence, which means he is not likely a threat to other students. Now, UCLA does not have to enroll him, since scholarships do require a player to remain a good citizen, and we know that UCLA hates bad publicity from events like this. The wildcard in all this, is how quickly it goes through the Texas judicial system. If this is still up in the air in August, all bets are off that he ever enrolls.

Having said all that, based on what we know today, we expect him to be on the team in the fall.

IS CARLOS STRICKLAND BACK IN PLAY?

2015 Dallas Skyline High School receiver Carlos Strickland was heavily recruited by the UCLA coaching staff, as well as a player that we here at Bruin Authority really liked. Strickland was one of the top receivers int he 2015 class with numerous offers from blue blood programs like Alabama, Notre Dame, Oklahoma and Texas.

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UCLA was considered a favorite in the stretch before he announced. In fact, one UCLA fan site actually reported prematurely that he announced for UCLA. In the end, he committed to Cal largely based on his relationship with Cal receivers coach Pierre Ingram.

So what happened since then? Ingram was arrested recently for solicitation of a prostitute at a Motel 6 (yes, Motel 6 – maybe Cal needs to pay their assistants more), on the Embarcadero.

Ingram was arrested on suspicion of misdemeanor solicitation of a lewd act. He was immediately put on administrative leave TODAY. We don’t know if Cal will release Ingram or not, but it makes it awfully hard to tell the parents of recruits that the staff will take care of their sons, and turn them into men, if they allow him to stay on staff.

So where does this place Strickland? He committed to Cal primarily because of Ingram, and UCLA was a very close second. Should Cal release Ingram, Strickland may be interested in UCLA again. And if Ingram stays, Strickland’s family may prefer he have a different coach anyway. Would Cal let him out of his LOI? They don’t have to, but it would be crazy bad publicity to force him to come to Cal and play for Ingram.

This is a story we will be following.

TROY AIKMAN DONATES ONE MILLION TO THE NEW UCLA FOOTBALL FACILITY!

Sorry, no criminal activity in this story! Just great news for UCLA and a Bruin football legend.

Troy Aikman has followed up his generous donation to the renovation of the Terry Donahue Pavilion at the Rose Bowl, by donating another million to the UCLA Wasserman Football Center.

Aikman is a guy we really like. He didn’t finish his degree while an undergraduate at UCLA, but in 2009, he came back, completed his degree, and participated in graduation ceremonies. Also of note, this past November, Aikman became the ninth player in UCLA football history to have his jersey retired.

“UCLA holds a very special place in my heart,” said Aikman. “As you go through life, it is common to be defined by the company you keep. I’ve been fortunate to be associated with two outstanding institutions. In many eyes, I’ll always be a Dallas Cowboy, and I’m extremely proud of that. By making this contribution to UCLA Football, It’s clear that I am, and always will be, a UCLA Bruin as well. My time at UCLA helped mold me into the person I am today, and I want the Bruin student-athletes that come after me to have the same opportunity I had to achieve their boyhood dreams.”

This puts UCLA at $54 million in their fundraising goal of $65 million for the Wasserman Football Center.

To honor Aikman for this landmark donation, the S&C facility will be named “The Troy Aikman Strength and Conditioning Center.”

“Troy is a once in a generation type player,” said UCLA head football coach Jim Mora. “He could have pledged nothing, and we would still stand in awe of his accomplishments and continue to recognize him as one of the all-time greats. Instead, Troy not only continues to redefine what it means to be great, he continues to redefine what it means to be a Bruin.”

For those of you Aikman junkies, UCLA has come out with The Aikman Collection.

A little factoid, Troy Aikman’s Twitter account has 1.3 million followers.

Mar 092015
 
website_update

We will be taking a few days off and then come back with Bruin fury in the next couple weeks.  Some of the things we have planned:

2016 recruiting hot board as only we can do it!

Extended coverage of UCLA basketball and the tournament (fingers crossed).

Coverage of Spring Practice.

A new place where we have special offers for our Bruin fan visitors.  We are lining up a lot of COOL things that will only be available here.   Discounts, freebies and more.

We are also planning our future as well.  Where do we go and what should we cover?  If you have thoughts, ideas, or comments about where you think the future of BruinAuthority.com should go, we would love to hear them.  Leave a comment below!

 

Feb 242015
 
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UPDATE: We work hard to get people to visit our site and we provide all our content for FREE, so is was disappointing when one of our visitors told us all our work from this page was copy and pasted on someone else’s website HERE. We love links back to our site because we want a place for Bruin fans to come and get great, free information about their team. It is one thing to post a summary of our story and add a link back to us, but something else to just take our entire story and post it elsewhere. Those sites benefit from our work without doing any work themselves and obviously it makes our work much harder to build a home for Bruin fans here.

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UCLA has officially announced the hiring of Tom Bradley as Defensive Coordinator, and as BruinAuthority.com was one of the very first to report, UCLA Football Intern Scott White has been promoted to Linebackers and Special Teams Coach, and Tommy Donatell has been brought in as a graduate assistant. UCLA also announced that Demetrice Martin has been promoted to Assistant Head Coach.

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Tom “Scrap” Bradley
UCLA Defensive Coordinator

Experience:
Present UCLA (Defensive Coordinator)
2014 West Virginia (Assistant Head Coach)
2011 Penn State (interim Head Coach)
2000-2011 Penn State (Defensive Coordinator/Defensive backs/Assistant Head Coach)
1996-1999 Penn State (Defensive Backs)
1985-1995 Penn State (Outside Linebackers/Special Teams)
1983-1985 Penn State (Wide Receivers)
1981-1983 Penn State (Running Backs)
1979-1981 Penn State (Defensive Backs)
1979 Penn State (Graduate Assistant)
1975-1978 Penn State (player/defensive back)

While we have some reservations about Bradley, we are also realists, and know there is no perfect coach. He is probably about as close as possible.

Our concerns were based on Bradley having never lived or coached tbradleyoutside of the Pennsylvania area, his entire family is in that same area, and his entire career and knowledge base is almost exclusively tied to one school. As he is now approaching 60 he will be taking a job across the country in a very different environment. What we don’t want is a new Defensive Coordinator again next season (3 in 3 seasons). Perhaps the challenge of coaching defense in the PAC-12 and trying to stop the most diverse and sophisticated offenses in the country is the allure.

Regardless, his credibility in football coaching circles is at the highest level. He has coached 18 All-Americans, 43 All-Conference players and 51 players who made it to the National Football League. His defenses at Penn State usually played at a very high level. The one exception that relates to UCLA was his lone game against USC in the 2009 Rose Bowl. 8th ranked Penn State’s defense was dismantled by USC as the Trojans put up 31 points in the first half, and Mark Sanchez passed for 413 yards, the second most in Rose Bowl history. Hopefully, that embarrassment has left a bitter taste in Bradley’s mouth and will help ensure the winning streak over the Trojans.

We have asked our friends in the Keystone State about him, and we heard noting but praise. There was not one statement of “he was good BUT…” Everything was positive from his character, to his coaching, to his recruiting. By all accounts, his players loved him as well.

Bottom line is we are happy to have Bradley and welcome him to the Bruin family. He is a terrific addition to the staff.

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Scott White
Linebacker/Special Teams Coach

Scott White’s experience:
Present UCLA Linebackers/Special Teams
2014 UCLA Football Intern
2011-2013 UCLA (Graduate Assistant)
2010 Palomar College (Linebackers Coach)
2009 Central Washington University (Linebackers Coach)
2003-2006 University of Washington (player and played in 45 career games)
1998-2001 Mission Bay High School (player and CIF-San Diego Section Defensive Player of the Year in 2001)

As for White, this is a huge promotion for him. Taking responsibility for all linebackers and special teams is a very big jump for someone who was a graduate assistant coach two years ago, and a Football Intern this past year.
SWhite However, we hear that White is a great fit for the position, expected to be a strong recruiter, and we believe will do well. We also suspect that Bradley will play somewhat of a mentor role to White anyway so ultimately, we are very happy with both coaches, and consider them to be upgrades to Ulbrich and Tuiasosopo.

White helped Ulbrich with linebackers the past two seasons. White has some limited coaching experience and probably always had the inside track since he is already in the program. Pretty good linebacker in college at the University of Washington where he had ties to Rick Neuheisel. While a solid player throughout his playing days, there was some controversy when he quit the team after being told he had lost his starting job. It was soon patched over and he was allowed back on the team. We would have preferred someone with more experience but we also hear he has great potential as a recruiter, and that has to be considered. White was interviewed last year and was a finalist for the same position that ultimately went to Mike Tuiasosopo.

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Tommy Donatell
Graduate Assistant

2015 UCLA Graduate Assistant
2013-2014 University of South Florida (Graduate Assistant/defensive backs)
2008-2012 University of Iowa (player/strong safety)
Peachtree Ridge High School, Duluth, Georgia (player/quarterback)

Although not announced, but also coming on board is NFL Defensive Back Coach Ed Donatell’s son, Tommy Donatell as a graduate tdonnatellassistant coach. Being an NFL coach’s son Donatell has grown up around the game. Considered a scrappy player, Donatell was lightly recruited as a quarterback out of high school because of two torn ACL’s. While in high school he made all-conference, was the team captain, and played safety in addition to quarterback. He ended up at Iowa as a preferred walk-on. At Iowa, Donatell was moved all over the place and while he began as a quarterback, he moved to defense, worked his way into the rotation, earned a scholarship, and eventually had starts at both safety and linebacker.

After graduating from Iowa, Donatell spent the past two years on the University of South Florida’s defensive staff, and primarily worked with defensive backs.

Donatell is coming to UCLA as a graduate assistant, just as he was at South Florida. There is no doubt that the long standing friendship of Donatell’s father Ed, and Coach Mora influenced the interest on both sides.

We don’t know what his specific coaching duties will be at UCLA, but we have heard he is high energy, a hard worker, and has the ability to be a very good recruiter. As we mentioned on our Coaching Hot Board, the arrival of Donatell allowed us to accurately predict the promotion of intern Scott White to the linebackers coach.

And on a side note, we have been told but have not verified, that Donatell has been linked romantically in the past to “Miss Iowa 2015.”  Ooh la la.

Here is a video interview we found of Donatell while still in college:

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As for Demetrice Martin, strangely, UCLA announced his “promotion” from Assistant Head Coach/Passing Game Coordinator/Defensive Backs to Assistant Head Coach Defense/Secondary. Not sure how this translates into a promotion announcement, but was probably an internal way to increase his compensation.

Feb 042015
 
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NOTES: We call this the “Signing Day Spectacular” but could have just as easily called it the “Spectacular Bruin Signing Day.” Frankly, we have been following recruiting intensely today, and it really feels like UCLA is getting most of the attention today around the country. Great day to be a Bruin!

We tried to list some of the achievements in this class, and when you look at them you realize that the future of UCLA is exciting and in good hands. Even the lessor known recruits have exceptional player biographies. For instance, Nathan Meadors, recruited primarily as a safety, had over 3,400 yards on offense his senior year! Josh Woods, a supposed 3-star athlete (we think he should be much higher) not only is a Max Preps FIRST TEAM All-American but has a 4.3 GPA! How about Octavius Spencer? Spencer averaged a whopping 49.4 yards on kickoff returns this season! He also returned 4 punts for touchdowns. This guy will be electric on UCLA special teams in the future. Check out the rest of the 2015 class…

Check out Coach Mora’s press conference on today’s recruiting news:

SIGNED BRUIN RECRUITS

Recruit LOI Received Comments
Soso Jamabo NLI received
6:21 a.m.
Consensus 5-star player and many think could be the number one running back in the country. First Team USA Today All-American. First Team MaxPreps All-American Team. Texas Class 6=A All-State First Team. Played in the Under Armour All-American High School Football Game January 2, 2015. As a senior, Jamabo rushed 235 times for 2,279 yards and 44 touchdowns.
Andre James NLI received
6:24 a.m.
Consensus 4-star player and one of the best in Utah. PrepStar All-American. American Family Insurance All-Utah First Team.
Will Lockett NLI received
6:33 a.m.
From Texas powerhouse, Manvel High school, Lockett had a fast rising senior season and picked UCLA over Michigan. PrepStar All-American. 6A All-District First Team. Houston Chronicle All-Greater Houston Football Team. Texas All-State Honorable Mention. His defensive team held 6 opponents to 10 points or less. As a senior, the defensive back had 48 tackles, 1 sack, and 4 interceptions. Will likely be an early enrollee and be eligible to participate in UCLA’s Spring Practice.

Keisean Lucier-South NLI received
7:07 a.m.
Consensus 5-star All-American and one of the top outside linebackers in the country. USA Today All-State First Team. PrepStar Top 150 Dream Team. Played in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl.
Tevita Halalilo NLI received
7:08 a.m.
A big man with a mean streak. PrepStar All-American. Riverside Press-Enterprise All-Area Team. MaxPreps Medium Schools All-American Second Team. American Family Insurance All-State Team. USA Today All-California First Team. Halalilo played in the Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl January 4, 2015.

Bolu Olorunfunmi NLI received
7:20 a.m.
Powerful running back. PrepStar All-West Region Team. MaxPreps Division 1 All-State Second Team. Fresno Bee All-Area Team. Northern California Rivals Camp MVP. Tri-River Conference Player of the Year. During his high school career, Bolu picked up 5,235 yards and 59 touchdowns.
DeChaun Holiday NLI received
7:29 a.m.
Very talented multi-position player. Named the 2014 San Diego Hall of Champions All-San Diego Section Player of the Year. USA Today First Team All-California Team. All-CIF Team. Consensus 4-star recruit. Was selected to play in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl. The talented defensive back was rarely tested as a senior by opposing teams.
Stephen Johnson III NLI received
7:34 a.m.
Fast. Did we say fast? Recruited as a cornerback but with the defection of Ryan Newsome, we expect UCLA to try him out on offense early on. Prep Star All-American. Played multiple positions in high school. As a senior quarterback, Johnson completed 49 of 94 passes for 939 yards and 6 touchdowns. Rushed 98 times for 728 yards and 13 touchdowns.

Rick Wade NLI received
8:06 a.m.
A tackling machine, the 6’6″ 245 pound Wade is one of the top players from from of the very best conferences. Made PrepStar All-West Region Team. Los Angeles Times All-Star Football Team. Trinity League Co-Lineman of the Year. In his senior season, the defensive lineman had 97 tackles, 3 sacks, and an interception returned for a touchdown.
Octavius Spencer NLI received
8:18 a.m.
Could be a steal. The underrated Spencer has a lot of upside. Made PrepStar All-West Region. Made Pasadena Star News First Team Offense. Led his team to the league championship and a 10 win season and made All-Rio Hondo League on BOTH offense and defense. As a senior on offense, Spencer had 31 receptions for 692 yards and 8 touchdowns. On special teams, Spencer returned 8 kick offs for 395 yards (49.4 yard average!) and 2 touchdowns, as well as had 15 punt returns for 358 yards (23.9 yard average) and 4 touchdowns. This young man could be electric on UCLA’s specials teams very early in his Bruin career. On defense, Spencer had 44 tackles and 2 interceptions.

Chris Clark NLI received
9:00 a.m.
Ranked the number one tight end in the country by Rivals.com and Scout.com.
Colin Samuel NLI received
9:02 a.m.
A big talented corner back from one of the top programs in the country. Samuel’s senior season has been a straight up trajectory as far as improvement and getting recognition. In fact, within a period of only three days after being offered by UCLA, he picked up offers from Michigan, Mississippi State, Oklahoma, Washington State, and Purdue. Made PrepStar All-West Region. Named 2014 California All-State Football Division 1 team. As a senior, the defensive back had 26 tackles, 2 for loss, and 1 interception.
Fred Ulu-Perry NLI received
10:03 a.m.
6’2″, 310. From a traditional powerhouse football program, Ulu-Perry played in the Under Armour All-American High School Football Game January 2, 2015. ESPN ranks Ulu-Perry as the number one offensive guard in the country. Scout.com ranks Ulu-Perry as the number one center in the country.

Josh Woods NLI received
10:48 a.m.
Another player Bruin Authority considers to be a steal. We have seen him play, he is the real deal. Woods had 92 tackles and 7 sacks in his senior season. He was also named to the MaxPreps 2014 All-American Football Team (first team) as well as the Los Angeles Times All-Star Football team. Will likely be an early enrollee and be eligible to participate in UCLA’s Spring Practice.
Cordell Broadus NLI received
11:35 a.m.
The son of Snoop Dogg/Lion, we consider this to be a landmark recruit for a number of reasons. Consensus 4-star athlete. Made PrepStar All-American. As a senior, the receiver for one of the top programs in the nation had 39 receptions for 602 yards and 11 touchdowns. That’s right a touchdown for almost every three receptions!

Josh Wariboko NLI received
1:58 p.m.
Was selected to play in the Under Armour All-American High School Football Game January 2, 2015. Consensus 4-star athlete and number one player in Oklahoma. Made Tulsa World All-State Team. The Oklahoman’s number one ranked player in the state. 2014 Max Preps Small School All-American Team.

Nathan Meadors NLI received
2:21 p.m.
This multi-talented athlete can be plugged into a number of spots and picked UCLA over Notre Dame. Named the San Andreas League Offensive MVP and All-CIF. Meadors racked up an amazing 3,452 yards on offense! On offense in 2014, Meadors player quarterback mostly and completed 97 of 166 passes for 1,481 yards, 22 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. He also rushed 146 times for 1,971 yards and 26 touchdowns. On defense, Meadors had 32 tackles and 3 sacks. Will likely be an early enrollee and be eligible to participate in UCLA’s Spring Practice.

RECRUITS WE ARE WAITING ON

Roquan Smith (announced for UCLA but awaiting on LOI)
L.J. Reed (may have issues preventing him from signing a LOI today)

WHERE OTHER SELECTED UCLA RECRUITS HAVE SIGNED

Ryan Newsome – Texas
Cassius Peat – Michigan State
Victor Alexander – Georgia Tech
Tyrone Wheatley Jr. – Michigan
Iman Mrshall – USC
Joseph Wicker – ASU

Jan 282015
 
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Iman
UPDATE: 1/29/2015 4:20 p.m. – Hearing Marshall has cancelled his official visit to Oregon this weekend. Good news for UCLA? We think it doesn’t hurt to clear the field a little.

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USC lock? Maybe. Reminiscent of the recruitment of Adoree’ Jackson or Juju Smith? Yeah. However, something about this recruitment feels a little different. In the past, a guy like Marshall would be criticized by his family and friends for “settling” with UCLA when he could get a free ride to USC. Those days are changing. USC has lost to UCLA three straight years. The general consensus about the UCLA coaching staff is that they care about their players, develop their players, and are turning UCLA into a national power. On the other hand, USC coach Sarkisian and his staff do not have the same reputation. They still have the USC tradition and historic reputation which is huge, but high school coaches and parents of recruits are not as blindly enthralled with USC as in years past. In other words, we no longer feel it is a given that a 5-star recruit from Poly will automatically pick the Trojans.

This particular recruitment is one of the strangest we have seen in a while. Only a month ago, we were certain UCLA was out of the running for Iman “Biggie” Marshall. Done. Dead in the water. Over and out. We moved on.

Today, we feel very differently.

For one, we hear he has visited the UCLA campus not once, but twice in the last couple weeks. Coach Mora also recently visited him at Poly High School and we definitely believe Mora is the key in this recruitment. We are hearing that Mora is guaranteeing that he will take a personal interest in the development of Marshall during his UCLA career and will do as much as possible to prepare Marshall for the NFL. And we are hearing this is very appealing to this recruit.

If it were any other head coach like say, USC head football coach Steve Sarkisian, it would be nice, but not a deal maker. However, with Mora, it is significant because Mora played defensive back in college, was the secondary coach for the Seattle Seahawks, as well as the San Diego Chargers and the New Orleans Saints. Mora was also the defensive coordinator for the San Francisco 49er’s and the Seattle Seahawks, and was the head coach of the Atlanta Falcons and the Seattle Seahawks. There are few coaches, if any in the country that are more qualified than Mora to prepare a college defensive back for the NFL. A college player can’t buy that level of coaching and this is rare air for a defensive back wanting to get to the league.

The UCLA coaches are also playing up the idea that at UCLA, Marshall will be THE MAN, while at USC, he will ALWAYS be compared to fellow former Poly athlete Juju Smith. In a way, he will be considered Juju’s little brother during his Trojan career. One thing we do know about Marshall is that he has a healthy ego. Being in the shadow as “Juju’s little brother” for the next couple years may not appeal to him anymore than it probably did during his Poly career.

In other related Marshall recruiting news:

1) We are hearing it is also appealing to him to play will fellow Poly teammates Colin Samuel (committed to UCLA) and Jojo Wicker (likely to commit to UCLA).

2) UCLA is now again recruiting Snoop Lion/Dogg’s son, Cordell Broadus. We know that Broadus and Marshall have been talking to each other recently about their respective recruitment’s and how UCLA is a big part of that picture – we find that an interesting development. Also, there are reports (we have not been able to verify) that Broadus will be taking an official visit to UCLA 1/30/2015.

3) Based on Twitter news, we believe he has been developing a good relationship lately with several UCLA recruits, which can’t hurt.

4) Many people have been telling us this is exactly like Adoree’ Jackson from last year. Adoree’ gave every indication he was really interested in UCLA and then chose USC. However, we think these are two very different people and different recruiting stories. Jackson frequently talked to the media and gave a number of specific things that were important to his choice of schools. The fans believed him when he said he was very open and in fact, USC may not even have been the favorite. For instance, we remember reports that Jackson said the most important criteria for him was going to a school that would be able to get him to the next Olympics in the long jump. We found that interesting, so of course the first thing we did was to look up the bio of the USC long jump coach. While that coach may be a nice guy, if we were hoping to get to the Olympics, he would not be very high on the list of coaches we would entrust our career to. There were probably a lot of schools in the country (including UCLA) that were more qualified to prepare him for the Olympics. Yet, Jackson still chose USC, in spite of it not meeting his number one criteria.

Marshall is different than Jackson. Frankly, in our opinion, he appears far more mature and serious about his recruitment.

Now, what does all this mean? Maybe nothing but we no longer would be shocked if he were to choose UCLA on signing day. We are not expecting it but we definitely think there is enough evidence to believe that UCLA has a puncher’s chance in this one. And frankly, we need the coaches to keep swinging at guys like Marshall (that is, supposed 5-star Trojan locks). One day one of them will say “yes” and that will be the day that USC fans everywhere, will remember as the day the world changed for them.

UPDATE: One of our readers let us know that a poster by the name of OswegoBruin on the BruinGold.com (or maybe BruinZone.com?) forum has promised to run naked through the streets of Westwood if Biggie signs with UCLA. We suggest they get their birthday suit ready, just in case!

BTW, both BruinGold and BruinZone are great FREE sites with good, knowledgeable UCLA sports fans. We highly recommend both!

COMING SOON: BruinAuthority.COM IS WORKING ON A BOATLOAD OF FREE OR DISCOUNTED STUFF ONLY AVAILABLE TO READERS OF THIS SITE. KEEP CHECKING BACK – WE HAVE SOME AWESOME OFFERS WE ARE LINING UP FOR OUR FELLOW BRUIN FANS!

 UCLA OFFENSIVE RECRUITING MONSTER BOARD

 UCLA DEFENSIVE RECRUITING MONSTER BOARD

 OTHER RECRUITS OF INTEREST

RECRUITING Q&A

UCLA RECRUITING DATES TO KNOW

Jan 052015
 
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The following should be considered opinion and commentary. The readers are advised to make their own opinions.

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A pay site is claiming that Coach Mora is interviewing for the Jets head coaching position, either today or tomorrow. Here is the Tweet:

That site is now being mentioned by news organizations and websites all over the country. Getting possibly thousands of links back to their site, an amount of publicity that they could never pay for, new Twitter followers, and probably a lot of new subscribers. And of course, they have a prominent link to a story that you have to pay for if you want the “inside information” and “breaking news” on the subject.

All good right?

Wrong. We have always been a little skeptical of pay sites because we believe their allegiance is not to the UCLA Bruins. We believe their allegiance is to making money. Period.

This is a great example. We believe that throwing out a statement like this is tantamount to sabotaging the program and sends the current fans into a frenzy, hopefully to subscribe to that site in order to get the REAL story on when Mora is leaving.

But it does deeper damage. If you are a player on the team, how do you feel about reading that in the morning? Are they thinking their coach is bailing on them and they have to hear it from some website? How about the assistant coaches whose families and livelihoods depend on their job at UCLA? And most importantly, how about the recruits? We are not sure a week goes by without some UCLA “fan” website claiming that Mora’s departure is imminent. This takes its toll on the program. It builds a sense of instability, regardless of how many times Mora has to deny it. Even if Mora tells every recruit he is staying, recruits will look at other schools just because of all the rumors. Coaches from other schools will be feeding this Tweet to each of our recruits. They will be told that after they sign with UCLA, Mora can leave and there is nothing they can do. They will be “stuck” with UCLA and a different coaching staff that they don’t know.

You don’t think the Trojan coaches will play that angle? We sure do.

This can even affect donations to the new football athletic facility.

Frankly, we just hope these so called “fan sites” will start caring more about the program than about creating drama for money.

UPDATE 3:15 p.m. 1/5/2015:

A new Tweet. What a surprise.

Frankly, we HATE this kind of speculative reporting and we REALLY hate it when someone writes that Mora is leaving as a factually true statement “according to sources.”

And of course, as we did our own investigative research, we found that Mora and the Jets rumors are not even new. We found reports from a week ago stating that Mora was contacted by the Jets, (as well as many other coaches in addition to Mora) to see if he had any interest. Note to those who claim to be in the media: Just because a school or pro team contacts Mora, that is not the same as “Mora will…interview for the Jets job.” Good grief.

Maybe he is leaving, but there is no reason to report it without the proof. We think it is destructive to the program and unnecessary, even if there is a profit to be made.

Sure, we ourselves talk about this subject from time to time. But we always put the positive (but truthful) spin on it. Our position is that it is great that we have a coach that is in demand from the top college teams in the country, as well as the NFL. It is a testament as to how good a coach Mora is. If we were recruits, we would want to play for a coach that the best football minds in the country want leading their programs. If you care about the program, THAT SHOULD BE THE STORY. It not only supports the program, helps with recruiting (and recruits do read this site), but most importantly IT IS THE TRUTH. After all, how many stories are there out there claiming that the Jets or college football blue bloods like the University of Michigan/Texas were interested in Sarkisian? Zero. None. That says it all.

Well, the damage is done, there is no accountability, and the profits have been made. Just another day as a Bruin fan.

Interested in recruiting? Check out our 2015 UCLA Recruiting Monster Board! CLICK HERE.

Jan 022015
 
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A lot of announcements and events in the next week leading up to National Signing Day. This page will be updated as new information becomes available.

Beginning of “Contact Period” Thursday, January 15-31, 2015. Coaches can visit recruits and families anywhere, anytime. There are restrictions on how often these visits can take place.

NEW: 1/29/2017 UCLA received a commitment from Anaheim Servite linebacker Jack Savage as a preferred walk-on.
Scouting report, video and more info on Savage can be found on our Defensive Recruits Monster Board.

Kendrick Norton tentatively scheduled to officially visit Auburn, Friday, January 30, 2015.

Tyrone Wheatley tentatively scheduled to officially visit Oregon, Friday, January 30, 2015.

Fred Ulu-Perry tentatively scheduled to officially visit Hawaii, Friday, January 30, 2015.

Fotu Leiato scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, Jaunary 30, 2015. We are now hearing Leiato will not visit UCLA at all.

Iman Marshall scheduled to officially visit Oregon, Friday, January 30, 2015. UPDATE: We are hearing this visit has been cancelled.

Josh Woods scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 30, 2015.

Joseph Wicker tentatively scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 30, 2015.

Nathan Meadors tentatively scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 30, 2015.

Colin Samuel scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 30, 2015. UPDATE: Colin tweeted this, this morning:

Dechaun Holiday scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 30, 2015.

Kyon Clark scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 30, 2015.

Keisean Lucier-Smith scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 30, 2015.

Roquan Smith scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 30, 2015.

There was speculation that Cordell Broadus would be visiting UCLA January 30, 2015. However, it appears he is actually in the Phoenix area supporting his father’s “Snooper Bowl” this weekend.

We are hearing that two junior recruits will also be visiting UCLA on Sunday, February 1, 2014.

Recruiting “Quiet Day” Sunday, February 1, 2015. No off-campus contact allowed between coaches and recruits during this time. Recruits can visit campus and coaches can still communicate electronically.

DeChaun Holiday expected to announce on Sunday, February 1, 2015.

Beginning of the recruiting “Dead Period” Monday, February 2-5, 2015. No in person contact between recruits and coaches, on or off campus. Written and electronic communications permitted.

Joesph Wicker expected to announce on National Signing Day, Wednesday, February 4, 2015 during the 1:00 p.m. PST hour on ESPNU.

Roquan Smith expected to announce on National Signing Day, Wednesday, February 4, 2015 during the 7:00 a.m. PST hour on ESPNU.

Nathan Meadors expected to announce on National Signing Day, Wednesday, February 4, 2015 between 1-3 p.m. PST on Fox Sports West.

Soso Jamabo expected to announce on National Signing Day, Wednesday, February 4, 2015 during the 6:00 a.m. PST hour on ESPN and ESPNU..

Jeff Holland expected to announce on National Signing Day, Wednesday, February 4, 2015 during the 7:00 a.m. PST hour on ESPN and ESPNU..

Josh Wariboko expected to announce on National Signing Day, Wednesday, February 4, 2015 during the 7:00 a.m. PST hour on ESPN and ESPNU.

Semisi Uluave expected to announce on National Signing Day, Wednesday, February 4, 2015.

Chris Clark expected to announce on National Signing Day, Wednesday, February 4, 2015 at 5:30 a.m. hour on ESPNU.

DeChaun Holiday expected to announce on National Signing Day, Wednesday, February 4, 2015.

Iman Marshall expected to announce on National Signing Day, Wednesday, February 4, 2015 during the 1:00 p.m. PST hour on ESPNU.

Cordell Broadus expected to announce on National Signing Day, Wednesday, February 4, 2015 during the 11:00 a.m. PST hour on ESPN and ESPNU.

Last day of official signing period, April 1, 2015.

ARCHIVED DATES
Under-Armour All-American Game – Friday, January 2, 2015, 1:00 p.m. Pacific, on ESPN. Tropicana Dome, St. Petersburg, Florida. UCLA commits expected to compete include Fred Ulu-Perry.

Stanley Norman expected announcement date: Saturday, January 2, 2015. UPDATE: Norman announced for ASU.

U.S. Army All-American Bowl – Saturday, January 3, 2015, 10:00 a.m. Pacific on NBC. Alamo Dome, San Antonio, Texas. UCLA commits expected to compete include Keisean Lucier-South.

Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl – Sunday, January 4, 2015, 6:00 p.m. Pacific, on Fox Sports. StubHub Center, Carson, California. UCLA commits expected to compete include Tevita Halalilo.

End of the recruiting “Dead Period” Wednesday, January 14, 2015. No in person contact between recruits and coaches, on or off campus. Written and electronic communications permitted.

Osa Masina had his in-home visit with the UCLA coaches, Thursday, January 15, 2015.

Ryan Newsome had his in-home visit with the UCLA coaches, Thursday, January 15, 2015.

Tyrone Wheatley had his in-home visit with the UCLA coaches, Thursday, January 15, 2015.

Nathan Meadors tentatively scheduled to officially visit Notre Dame, Friday, January 16, 2015.

Fotu Leiato scheduled to officially visit WSU, Friday, January 16, 2015.

Kendrick Norton tentatively scheduled to officially visit Miami, Friday, January 16, 2015.

Iman Marshall scheduled to officially visit Florida State, Friday, January 16, 2015.

Semisi Uluave tentatively scheduled to officially visit Texas Tech, Friday, January 16, 2015.

Dechaun Holiday scheduled to officially visit ASU, Friday, January 16, 2015.

Benning Potoa’e scheduled to officially visit the University of Washington, Friday, January 16, 2015.

Alize Jones was tentatively scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 16, 2015. NOTE: With his commitment to Notre Dame on January 15, we have to assume this has been cancelled.

Carlos Strickland officially visited UCLA, Friday, January 16, 2015.

Victor Alexander scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 16, 2015.

Octavious Spencer scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 16, 2015.

Tony Brown scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 16, 2015.

Prentice McKinney scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 16, 2015. UPDATE: We are hearing this visit may be, or has already been cancelled. He may have reaffirmed his commitment to Notre Dame.

For UCLA on the January 16th weekend, we are hearing there is a surprise visitor. We are tracking down who it is right now. UPDATE: Looks like it was junior linebacker Camilo Eifler of Bishop O’Dowd High School. Here is his Tweet:

Soso Jamabo scheduled to officially visit Texas A&M, Saturday, January 17, 2015.

Brandon Ingram being scouted by UCLA basketball assistant coach David Grace at the Hoop Hall Classic in Boston MA, Saturday, January 17, 2015.

Iman Marshall scheduled to officially visit Michigan, Monday, January 19, 2015.

Benning Potoa’e expected to announce his decision on Thursday, January 22, 2015.

Soso Jamabo scheduled to officially visit Texas, Friday, January 23, 2015.

Dechaun Holiday scheduled to officially visit Washington, Friday, January 23, 2015. NOTE: We are hearing this visit has been cancelled.

Cassius Peat tentatively scheduled to officially visit ASU, Friday, January 23, 2015.

Victor Alexander scheduled to officially visit Georgia Tech, Friday, January 23, 2015.

Kendrick Norton tentatively scheduled to officially visit Mississippi, Friday, January 23, 2015.

Iman Marshall scheduled to officially visit LSU, Friday, January 23, 2015.

Ryan Newsome expected to announce his decision at 1:00 P.M. PST on Friday, January 23, 2015. BOOM: Newsome committed to UCLA.

Osa Masina expected announcement date: 10:40 a.m. PST, Friday, January 23, 2015. NOTE: Masina as expected, committed to USC.

CeCe Jefferson has one official visit remaining and has indicated he may use it to visit UCLA on Friday, January 23, 2015. NOTE: We are hearing this visit will not happen. UCLA has been eliminated.

Byron Cowart is scheduled to officially visit Florida on Friday, January 23, 2015. However, we are hearing the UCLA coaches are really pushing him to change his visit to UCLA for this weekend. We are not optimistic. NOTE: We are hearing this visit will not happen. UCLA has been eliminated.

Chris Clark expected to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 23, 2015.

Tyrone Wheatley scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 23, 2015.

Maea Teuhema tentatively scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 23, 2015. NOTE: He has arrived on campus.

Semisi Uluave tentatively scheduled to officially visit UCLA, Friday, January 23, 2015. NOTE: It appears this visit has been cancelled, which verifies our sources – we have been stating this visit would probably not happen since mid-December.

NOTE: We are hearing there will be more than one surprise visitor this weekend, January 23, 2015. Perhaps as many as four. NOTE: We are now hearing that UCLA has asked some of them to visit next weekend instead. There has been some recruiting movement this week and the UCLA coaches may be looking at some different options. Looks like UCLA is gearing up for a HUGE visit weekend beginning on the 30th.

Carlos Strickland is expected to announce his decision on Tuesday, January 27, 2015. UPDATE: Announced for Cal.

For details about UCLA football recruits, including our percentages for signing with the Bruins, check out our Recruiting Monster Board.

Dec 122014
 
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Sports news and notes from UCLA and around the country:

The UCLA intramural (IM) field is getting a new look. UCLA is installing a synthetic turf on 7.7 acres of it. The upgrade began December 1, 2014, and is designed to save UCLA 6.5 million gallons of water a year. The 3.5 million dollar project will include a jogging track, and permanent field lines for soccer, football, flag football, rugby, softball, and lacrosse.

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Gary Anderson is starting to fill out his staff at Oregon State. Already named include his Recruiting Coordinator from Wisconsin, Vince Guinta, and the Director of Football Operations for BYU, Zack Nyborg. No word yet on recruiting ace Chad K. While we like Mike Riley (and were in favor of him replacing Bob Toledo a decade ago), we have to consider that the quality of PAC-12 coaching have increased significantly with the hiring of Andersen.

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We heard a few rumors that Noel Mazzone was being considered for the Oregon State position. We can state they were false. OSU interviewed four other coaches for the position besides Anderson. They included EWU head coach Beau Baldwin, Utah State head coach Matt Wells, Hawaii head coach Norm Chow, and a courtesy interview to OSU alum and San Diego State defensive line coach Osia Lewis.

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UAB recently dropped football due to “flat profits and growing costs.” We have frequently written about how UCLA football struggles with administrators and faculty behind the scenes who consider it a threat. They mistakenly look at the football program as draining their research money and skimming their glory.

We found this interesting article at AL.com, which suggests UAB undervalued the economic impact of dropping football.

“UAB could lose upwards of $2 million annually in potential lost revenue from television rights and the new College Football Playoffs payout model.” Read the article HERE.

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The Detroit News is reporting that the odds of Coach Mora becoming the next coach of Michigan are 8-1. They also say the odds are 8-1 that Mora will be the next college coach to take an NFL job. We don’t think there is much to these rumors.

After all, Mora asked the UCLA administration to increase coaching salaries. They did and he now has the 7th highest paid staff in college football. He asked for a new football facility, and UCLA began raising $50 million for a state of the art building. He wanted to include the color black into the UCLA football palette. UCLA did and while it seems like a minor thing, it is really a giant bureaucratic marketing hurdle to do something like that. UCLA seems to be very accommodating to his requests and the UCLA family has completely embraced his non-profit charity, the “Jim Mora Count on Me Foundation.”

Hard to imagine him believing the grass is much greener anywhere else.