A photo posted by EDDIE VANDERDOES (@eddiev_47) on
Redshirt junior Eddie Vanderdoes officially traded his final year of eligibility at UCLA for a chance at the NFL on Monday, announcing on social media that he would be entering the NFL Draft this spring.
Vanderdoes was honored as a senior prior to UCLA’s last home game of the season this year and was carried off the field after his final practice, as is the UCLA tradition for seniors.
In replacing Kenny Clark, who declared for the NFL Draft early last year, Vanderdoes had 29 tackles this season with 1.5 sacks while starting all 12 games for the Bruins. His 29 tackles were a career-low for him in a season, except for 2014 when he played only one game before tearing his ACL. Continue reading →
Wooden Legacy tournament MVP Lonzo Ball helped UCLA climb three more spots in the AP poll.
UCLA has climbed three spots in the AP poll each of the last two weeks, landing at No. 11 this week. The Bruins proved their freshmen can deliver in close games, but I’m most interested in the way they’ve won against opponents with contrasting strengths. For example, UCLA didn’t have a player who could matchup with Texas A&M preseason All-SEC center Tyler Davis. But the Bruins found ways not to get dominated in the paint or on the boards by a physically superior Aggies team.
UCLA still has plenty to prove, which is why I don’t have them ranked as high on my ballot, but it deserves credit for finding ways to beat every team on the schedule seven games into the season.
How I voted: 1. Kentucky
6. North Carolina
I was a late arrival to the Baylor party because I wasn’t convinced by the win over Oregon sans Dillon Brooks. But two more wins over ranked teams this week, including Louisville, and maybe Kansas better start watching its back in the Big 12. 9. St. Mary’s
The Bruins achieved their first two wins over power 5 opponents this week. While Texas A&M and Nebraska aren’t world beaters, UCLA handled its business and proved its freshmen can deliver in close games. Continue reading →
Offensive lineman Conor McDermott and defensive end Takkarist McKinley accepted invitations to play in the 2017 Reese’s Senior Bowl on Monday.
The pair of Bruins will participate in the showcase event on Jan. 28, 2017.
McKinley had a strong season in his final year at UCLA, finishing with a team-leading 18 tackles and 10 sacks. He had a season-high five tackles for loss against Utah, but was held without one for the final two games of the year.
McDermott started every game at left tackle for the Bruins this season, one of only two offensive linemen to make it through the entire year.
It’s not like they’re toppling the best teams in the country (Wait for it…UCLA plays at No. 1 Kentucky on Saturday!) but these are major conference opponents that pushed the Bruins to provide answers to some significant questions. Most notably, could freshmen Lonzo Ball and TJ Leaf answer the bell in close games? The answer is an unequivocal yes. Continue reading →