There seems to be a buzz of excitement around the recruits of the program…
UCLA head coach Rick Neuheisel: “I recruit these kids like they’re already in my locker room. I talk to them like, ‘Here’s what we’re going to do guys.’ I don’t just talk about what it’s like to walk Bruin Walk. I want them to know what the plan is, what the vision is. ‘Here’s where you fit into that vision. Here’s why it’s so important that you come. You’d be missing out if you didn’t.’ Then the connection they get with one another because of all these outlets like all-star games and trips – it becomes a huge selling point. ”
Has that changed?
Neuheisel: “No, I think there’s just more opportunity to get in touch with one another. No. 1, Facebook – the vehicles of conversation are so much easier than they were in our day. No. 2, the relentless attention to recruiting. It is what it is – it’s wonderful but it’s time-consuming. Certainly it creates more information and opportunities to communicate with one another. No. 3, all-star games, which never existed, but now players can go and be on each other’s teams. That’s all wonderful. But now, you’ve created the idea, ‘it’s us.’ I distinctly feel that’s why Josh Shirley’s coming here. Josh Shirley saw all these guys coming to UCLA and says, ‘You know, wait a minute, I want to go there.’”