UCLA gets late 2011 verbal from Downey’s Kyle Lewis

Just got off the phone with Downey running back/safety Kyle Lewis, who confirmed that he is heading to UCLA in the fall after giving a verbal commitment to Rick Neuheisel, who offered Lewis last week.

Lewis was an All-CIF 1st team pick for the Vikings after a 1,200-yard, 11-touchdown performance in 2010 and he
won the SPARQ competition at the Long Beach Nike combine last April. Poor grades, though, put Lewis’ future in doubt, and most Division-1 schools held off on offering him after it took Lewis until after signing day to get the grades up.

“Freshman and sophomore year were really tough for me,” said Lewis, who was clocked at 4.49 at the combine. “I got off-track with school, with football. I really didn’t care at the time. I didn’t think I could play D-1. But after junior year I was No. 1 out of 1000s in the nation at the SPARQ combine, and it turned me back on to football and how great life is. It got me right there.”

Lewis said that UCLA regarded him more for his free safety abilities, but he’s considered a true athlete, and that he will sign after he graduates in June.He said he chose the Bruins primarily because of the academics, as he’s back on track in the classroom and has turned a corner after hitting the books.

“I love UCLA man,” Lewis said. “There isn’t a higher ranked school for me. Academics is going to come first, I’ve been picking up my school work the last two years. I knew if I went to UCLA, I’d have a good future.”

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  • BruinFaithful

    Great, another hopeful sleeper recruit?

    I’m underwhelmed. The kid doesn’t even have a profile on Rivals or Scout.

    The well produced highlight reel may look good, but he’s not exactly playing giants out there and his league and competition leave much to be desired.

  • http://www.insidesocal.com/ucla Jon Gold

    You are hard to please.

  • 420bruin

    Welcome Kyle!! Any person who put education first is a winner in my book!

  • Anonymous

    I guess UCLA is offering scholarships to anyone nowadays. The program gets more and more pathetic each and every day.

  • Mario DiLeo

    @Anon.1:42 – “…UCLA is offering scholarships to anyone…” What’s wrong? Jealous they didn’t give one to you? Last time I checked (this year), the University rejected over 50,000 applications for prospective freshmen. Guess you were one of them…

  • Anonymous

    Bring him in!
    – Mr. Hand

  • http://www.f1junkie.com Duh

    Jon, I hope you and everyone that reads your blog realize that the majority of comments that shine a poor light on UCLA are from the Spoiled Children across town.
    No Bruin Faithful would post such egotistical sentiment, only a TROJAN would.

    BEWARE OF CHARLATANS FOLKS!

  • Anonymous

    I don’t want to hear any more about “our elite academic requirements” keeping us from signing anyone. Clearly not the case and never was.

  • Anonymous

    Anon 10:35 must be a Trojan, since he can’t read: The young man said he got his grades up, he’s hitting the books, and his education is first.

    Goodness.

  • PV bruin

    Give the kid some credit for improving his grades… eventually he will learn to keep up with the peers on the field and inside the classroom.

    Welcome Kyle to the bruins family.

  • BruinFaithful

    Jon,

    I’m not hard to please. I just want my team to compete, be fun to watch, and win BCS Bowls and Championships. Can anybody say they want different for their school or team? But seriously now, I had NO problem with the 2008, 2009, or 2010 classes. Is there anybody here who can say I said different? I may be cynical, but certainly not hard. Considering the last 10 years of Bruin Football, can you blame me?

    WAKE UP people!!!! We have just gone through the worst 10 years of UCLA Football, in the history of our school. Only one season, that’s right, one season with more than 7 wins in the last 10 years and only 1 Final Top 25 Ranking. It’s pathetic really and unless people wake up here and force change, it will be more of the same.

    I’ve supported the program and the AD and the coaches, except for Duhrrell, faithfully. I like the coaching changes, I think they are for the best. But considering the sales pitches of the last few years, I think a little cynicism is in order. That message of hope for the future is becoming muted. They say it’s always darkest before the dawn, well, it’s mighty dark right now. At least Toledo’s teams were fun to watch, even when they started losing.

    BTW, magically, this kid has a profile on Scout as of today, but without a ranking. Even if the kid had grade issues, he certainly wouldn’t be the first, it doesn’t make sense that he wouldn’t be profiled on his talent alone before today.

    Again, don’t get me wrong, I wish the kid the best. I hope he becomes a Rhodes Scholar and a Top 10 Draft pick. However, can any of you blame me for assuming it won’t happen?

  • TONY

    TO BRUINFAITHFUL,

    Please read the article again and what this kid accomplished against 1200 other kids… finished first in the SARQ… than went onto Oregon to face 19 other finalist and finished 5th. Yeah this might be a sleeper that everyone overlooked. Look at Riley and his film Lewis looks close to a twin at safety. Bring him in because Riley could be gone in 2 years.

  • Anonymous

    To anon @11:05
    Yeah, I can read. No offers due to grades but he “got his grades up” in the past semester. That must have been a hell of a semester to go from un-recruitable to ucla material.

  • Anonymous

    So, either 5:36 still can’t read, or he’s unwilling to read honestly.

    Which is it, Anon?

  • Jake d

    I saw this kid in person at the SPARQ combine in Oregon. The kid is fast as they come. He clocked in at a 4.4 40 and I believe a 3.9 shuttle. Thats a better combine score than some pro’s. Just saying
    Seeing his well built body shape I believe he still has room to grow.
    By his sophomore year he’ll
    Be 6’2 210 and a true contributor to the ucla defense .
    Although I am not a bruin fan. I can honestly say that they got a nice recruit.
    Good luck Lewis

  • Husky

    Go Dawgs.

  • Harry

    Dear Coach Neu:

    We at the University of Washington would like to express our thanks to you for your recent attempts to make amends for the mess you left on Montlake. The additions of Josh Shirley and Kyle Lewis to our football team are the first steps to reconciliation for your lies and general Slickery.

    Also, thank you for showing up Nov. 17, 2010 for your butt-kicking. We’re sorry we won’t see you again next year for your farewell tour as a D-1 football coach!

    Cheers and Bow Down,

    The Huskies