UCLA landed four-star defensive tackle Ainuu Taua, according to Rivals.com’s Edward Lewis, adding more depth to a line that loses three seniors. The 6-foot-1, 270-pound Lompoc native visited Westwood this weekend, and gives the Bruins their 13th verbal commitment of the 2014 class.
Taua is rated the 10th-best prospect in California, but UCLA is set at nose tackle with a budding star in freshman Kenny Clark. Eddie Vanderdoes locks down one defensive end spot, with the other to be filled by senior Owamagbe Odighizuwa assuming full recovery from multiple hip surgeries in spring. Former five-star recruit Ellis McCarthy will likely back up multiple positions.
Kylie Fitts, who had hand/wrist surgery last month, will also rotate in at defensive end.
The unit’s biggest loss next year is star defensive end Cassius Marsh, but the upcoming graduations of Keenan Graham and nose tackle Seali’i Epenesa also open up reps for younger players.