UCLA gets pair of four-star recruits Martin Andrus, Rahyme Johnson

With less than a month left until National Signing Day, UCLA picked up two big commits Friday in four-star defensive tackle Martin Andrus and four-star linebacker Rahyme Johnson.

The pair of L.A. natives announced their commitments in a joint video with cameos from fellow UCLA commits Jaelan Phillips and Jaylan Shaw.

Andrus, a 6-foot-1, 280-pound defensive tackle from Los Angeles High, is a four-star recruit according to Scout.com and a three-star according to Rivals and 247 Sports. He was also considering Oregon, USC and Nebraska, among others.

This is Johnson’s second commitment to UCLA as he pledged to the Bruins on July 24, 2015 before withdrawing on May 13, 2016. The 6-foot-4, 210-pound outside linebacker from Salesian was also considering Oregon, Oregon State, Nebraska and Notre Dame. He told Scout.com that UCLA linebackers coach Scott White was relentless in his recruiting even after the decommitment and that helped reel Johnson back in.  Continue reading

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Jim Mora on Jedd Fisch’s hire with Petros and Money

Head coach Jim Mora hired his third offensive coordinator in six years at UCLA this season. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Head coach Jim Mora hired his third offensive coordinator in six years at UCLA this season. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

After speaking with the media on a conference call Thursday, UCLA head coach Jim Mora jumped on the Petros and Money show to talk about Jedd Fisch‘s hire, not playing in a bowl game and the return of Mique Juarez.

Mora, when speaking of the offensive philosophy Fisch will bring to the team, continued to emphasize his dislike of labels when it comes to football. Don’t call UCLA’s new scheme pro-style, don’t call it spread. Just call it multiple. He also expanded on his comments about spread teams not winning national championships, saying that many teams used elements of the spread, but didn’t exclusively run that system, such as Florida and Texas, which both used tight ends.

After missing a bowl game for the first time in his UCLA tenure, Mora said he would sometimes “peek” at the bowl games this season, but admitted “it stung very, very badly to not be in a bowl game.”

Mora confirmed that Juarez will rejoin the team Monday morning at 7 a.m. in the team’s first meeting of winter quarter. Juarez posted on social media on Wednesday “I’m back.”

“I have tremendous respect for the way he attacked the issues that he had,” Mora said on the radio. “I respect the fact that he stayed in school. I respect the fact that he had he had enough courage to admit that he needed some help and to go find that help. I’m pulling for his young man because i think he’s a great kid. I hope that it all goes well for him.”

Listen to the full interview below:

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Jim Mora says he hopes to stay at UCLA for rest of career

UCLA football head coach Jim Mora talks to the media after practice. Photo by Brad Graverson // Daily Breeze

UCLA football head coach Jim Mora talks to the media after practice. Photo by Brad Graverson // Daily Breeze

UCLA’s Jim Mora is often involved in NFL coaching rumors during the offseason, but according to the head coach, he is done job searching for the remainder of his career if he can help it.

“My sole focus is UCLA and UCLA football,” Mora said on Thursday’s media conference call introducing new offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch. “I love it here. I hope I can stay here the rest of my career. I hope I can win enough games to be worthy of staying here the rest of my career. I love it here.”

Mora signed a contract extension last summer that will keep him with the Bruins through the 2021 season then had his worst year of his UCLA tenure last year, going 4-8 and missing a bowl game.

Other notes from the conference call/about the Fisch hire: Continue reading

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UCLA hires Jedd Fisch as offensive coordinator

UCLA made it official on Thursday, hiring Jedd Fisch as its new offensive coordinator.

Fisch, who sent the above tweet two days ago, joins the staff from Michigan, where he was the passing game coordinator and quarterbacks and wide receivers coach.

“UCLA is known for attracting high-caliber and high-character student-athletes,” Fisch said in a statement. “The opportunity to mentor these types of young men is extremely exciting, as is the chance to work with coach (Jim) Mora. I’ve said many times how fortunate I have been throughout my career to learn from some tremendous mentors, and this opportunity is no different.”

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Mique Juarez posts message on social media about return

I’m back …great opportunity to do something better. Painter by @ceaches_ ❤️️

A photo posted by Mique Juarez (@mique_juarez3) on

UCLA linebacker Mique Juarez could be on track to return to the field soon, by the looks of a recent Instagram post from the freshman.

Juarez has not participated in any football activities since last August when he took a sudden leave of absence due to personal reasons. During that time, he attended classes and remained steadfast in saying that he wanted to return to the team in the future when the time was right. He remained in contact with the coaching staff during his absence with the intention of continuing his football career at UCLA.

UCLA starts winter quarter classes on Jan. 9 with offseason workouts scheduled before spring camp.

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