UCLA Above and Beyond Skills Camp Recap

Inside UCLA Campus Correspondent Jacob Ruffman returns with a recap of today’s Above and Beyond Skills camp at Spaulding Field. Ruffman is a recruiting enthusiast and a terrific young writer, and I hope to have him as a frequent presence to ramp up our recruiting coverage. This is some great stuff, with interviews to follow tomorrow.
Enjoy….

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There was a little more flash involved in today’s UCLA Above and Beyond Skills camp compared to the lineman camp yesterday. There were more oohs and aahs, much more competitive chatter and it a more social environment at Spaulding Field.

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Most of the top players in attendance were not participating in the camp, but a couple of big names were out there doing drills during the first half, including 4-star WR Bryce Treggs and 3-stars TE Ian Taubler and Richard Smith. Non-participating visitors included 4-star CB Ishmael Adams, WR Gabe Marks, WR Kenny Lawler and two Serra defensive linemen who shined at the linemen camp yesterday, DE Kache Palacio“>Kache Palacio and Royce Dodd.

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One of the top prospects on hand that had yet to receive a UCLA offer was ATH Bryan Harper. He got reps on both sides of the ball, but he looks like he’ll end up on the defensive side; he had a smooth backpedal and fluid hips that make him more suited to be a defensive back.

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Treggs showed why he is one of the top wide receivers in the nation during his stint. He’s a refined route runner and he has good quickness with great hands for this level. He didn’t compete in the second portion because offensive coordinator Mike Johnson didn’t want to risk injury. Treggs spent the majority of the day talking with other recruits and the coaching staff. He has a magnetic personality, the type of recruit who would go out and recruit for you. He spent a lot of time with Adams and is also good friends with Smith and Marks.

Treggs still has Cal in the lead with Notre Dame and Stanford following, but he did say that UCLA is in his top group with those three schools. This is a change because he had only Cal, Stanford and Notre Dame in his top group before the camp.

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Smith, an Arizona State soft verbal, came out and did his best impersonation of Long Beach Poly’s mascot, the Jackrabbit. Though lightning-fast, he did lose focus a couple of times during the drills and dropped some balls and he didn’t exactly jump to the front of the line to get more reps in.

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Taubler had a good day and he should rise on the recruiting lists as the year rolls on. He has great size for a tight end, and he has a good physical presence and promising route-running abilities. He played through two bouts of pneumonia during last season so look for his production to take an uptick during his senior year.

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One thing that really stood out was how into the camp defensive coordinator Joe Tresey was. He was giving attention to kids who probably won’t land an offer from UCLA and really getting them to improve. A lot of coaches at these camps just focus on kids who the school is recruiting already but Tressey was there to coach and he did just that.

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Several UCLA players also came to check out the camp including Randall Carroll, Datone Jones, Torian White and Kevin McReynolds. Jones was out at the linemen camp yesterday, as well, talking with some of the recruits and Carroll spent a lot of time today with Treggs, Adams, Smith and some other prospects. I was also able to talk with McReynolds a little and he seems like a high quality guy.

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  • D

    Jon, can you PLEASE ask RN why he isn’t actively pursuing more lineman (OL) and (DL). I understand we’re doing okay on the defensive side, but the fact remains the reason we have stunk besides not having a qb, is our Lines are too weak to make any dent in protection to prevent pressure, and on the side, to apply it. It just doesn’t make sense how many other positions we are going after when it all starts in the trenches? Thanks for the great coverage, and getting other people involved to keep up the information here.