Three-star RB AJ Carter commits to UCLA

DeShaun Foster secured his first commitment as UCLA’s running backs coach Saturday as three-star recruit AJ Carter announced his pledge to the Bruins on Twitter.

Carter, a 6-foot, 220-pound back from Louisiana, held an offer to Texas Tech from Foster before the former UCLA running back took the coaching position with the Bruins. Carter also had offers from Arkansas, Arizona State, Missouri and Mississippi State, among others.

The Bruins, who didn’t sign any running backs in the 2017 class, will lose at least one after this year with the graduation of Nate Starks.

Carter is UCLA’s second verbal commit in as many days and seventh overall. UCLA also has commitments from safeties Jhevon Hill and Cam’ron Jones, offensive lineman Blake McDonald, athlete Isaiah Johnson, defensive lineman Aaron Maldonado and wide receiver Kyle Phillips.

Here is Carter’s highlight tape:

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UCLA spring football day 11: Team focused on repetition in 11-on-11s

UCLA’s Eldridge Massington, pictured in a 2014 practice, said UCLA’s receivers are more focused on run blocking this year with new coach Jimmie Dougherty. (Photo by Hans Gutknecht/Los Angeles Daily News)

The timing may not have looked ideal for Jimmie Dougherty, but the affection he has held for UCLA for more than a decade was too strong to ignore.

After less than two months as Oregon’s wide receivers coach, Dougherty flew south to Westwood to take the same position at UCLA this season. Since arriving, he’s jumped head on into improving UCLA’s inconsistent receivers group while providing offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch a vital familiar face as they install a new offense.

More on how Dougherty fell in love with UCLA as a San Diego assistant coach and what he brings to the Bruins.

Video interview with Fisch

Here are notes/observations from practice today: Continue reading “UCLA spring football day 11: Team focused on repetition in 11-on-11s” »

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San Marcos WR Kyle Phillips commits to UCLA

Wide receiver Kyle Phillips announced his commitment to UCLA on Friday, giving the Bruins their first offensive skill player for the 2018 recruiting class.

Phillips also had offers from Arizona State, Arizona, Cal, Oregon, Utah and Washington State, among others. The 5-foot-11, 176-pound prospect from San Marcos High is the No. 7 receiver in California and No. 9 in the West, according to Scout.com. He’s a four-star recruit according to Scout and a three-star by Rivals’ rankings.

UCLA did not sign any receivers in the 2017 class, but will be losing at least four players from the group after this season. Darren Andrews, Eldridge Massington, Alex Van Dyke and Mossi Johnson are all entering their final years of eligibility. Andrews’ graduation will open the starting spot at slot receiver, where Phillips could contribute.

UCLA now has six verbal commits for the 2018 class: safeties Jhevon Hill and Cam’ron Jones, offensive lineman Blake McDonald, athlete Isaiah Johnson and defensive lineman Aaron Maldonado.

Phillips’ junior year highlights:

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UCLA spring football day 10: A real spring game

Head coach Jim Mora is planning to have an official spring scrimmage for the team’s spring showcase. (Photo by Brittany Murray/SCNG)

There’s no telling how UCLA’s next four practices will go, but if they go according to plan, the team’s final spring practice will be its first official spring game in three years.

Head coach Jim Mora said he plans on having a scrimmage between blue and white teams on April 29 at Drake Stadium during the Spring Showcase, barring significant injuries.

Mora opted to skip the scrimmage format for the spring showcase during the past two years due to injury concerns, but is encouraged by UCLA’s current health status as DeChaun Holiday (shoulder) suffered the only significant injury of spring practice so far.

More on the possible spring showcase format and the backup quarterback competition

Video interviews

Here are notes/observations for the day: Continue reading “UCLA spring football day 10: A real spring game” »

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