UCLA notes: Receiver Devin Lucien passes concussion tests

» After a brief visit to the hospital on Tuesday night, UCLA receiver Devin Lucien passed his concussion tests on Friday and could return to practice on Monday — albeit in a red non-contact jersey. The redshirt junior had looked like arguably the team’s best receiver through camp before his hitting his head trying to make a catch, matching up with top cornerback Fabian Moreau on most plays.

Linebacker Zach Whitley, who has missed most of training camp in San Bernardino with head injury, returned to practice today for some sideline work. Head coach Jim Mora said the true freshman could potentially be back tonight’s practice, or at least by Monday.

Offensive lineman Scott Quessenberry is out with a “minor” concussion.

Receiver Mossi Johnson took off his red non-contact jersey this morning, while safety Randall Goforth put one on. Both are dealing with minor shoulder injuries.

“As far as comparing injuries to the last two camps, we’re in much better shape than we ever were, so that’s really encouraging,” Mora said.

» The Bruins worked heavily on special teams on Friday, adding a pre-stretch session that lasted about half an hour. Running backs coach Kennedy Polamalu took noticeable command of the unit. Since being hired last December, he has been a vocal presence in practices; at one point this morning, he had the entire team dead silent while he barked instructions. Continue reading

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UCLA post-spring position outlook: Quarterbacks

Spring football is done, and over three months still stand between us and the start of UCLA’s third season under Jim Mora — one that comes with national title aspirations and accompanying media glare. Over the next week, this blog will cover each of the Bruins’ position groups. First up …


If Brett Hundley stays healthy, UCLA’s Rose Bow/national title aspirations should stay afloat. The rising redshirt junior had a chance to be one of the top quarterbacks taken in this month’s NFL draft had he declared, but chose instead to spend one last year in college. Continue reading

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Spring notes: Head coach Jim Mora talks up cornerback Fabian Moreau

– Head coach Jim Mora pointed out much of Fabian Moreau’s progress at cornerback, going so far into the hyperbole as to call him a potential All-American.

While it might still be too early to ink that sort of praise, Moreau is clearly turning himself into UCLA’s best defensive back. Even Mora couldn’t resist; in the span of four minutes or so, Mora went from saying he didn’t notice Moreau much (a good thing) to saying the former high school tailback is a future first-round NFL draft pick.

– Mora also said next Saturday’s “Spring Showcase” will involve a lot more actual football than it did last year. Continue reading

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VIDEO: QB Asiantii Woulard discusses his development

Asiantii Woulard studied behind quarterback Brett Hundley as he redshirted this season, focusing mostly on improving his pocket presence. The 6-foot-3, 205-pound freshman didn’t say much about his readiness to start should Hundley go pro, but did talk about their work together.

“He helped me a lot with understanding our protections and where to start our progressions, different defenses against the formation that we’re running,” Woulard said. “he’s been behind me sometimes when I’m running our offense, reminding me of who to read, who am I keying, where to make the throw if this guy does what. He’s actually walking with me every step of the way.”

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Quarterback Asiantii Woulard impresses on first day

Asiantii Woulard wasn’t originally part of UCLA’s plans. The Elite 11 camp MVP originally committed to South Florida, but changed his mind in December. Two months after that, he donned a blue baseball cap and track jacket on ESPNU.

“We, quite frankly, got lucky that he was out there and available when he was,” Bruins coach Jim Mora said on Feb. 6, shortly after announcing the UCLA recruiting class. “The stars kind of aligned for us.”

When the Bruins opened preseason camp on Wednesday, Woulard only made them look more fortunate. He looked every bit of his listed 6-foot-3, 205 pounds, with a frame that can easily carry more muscle. Still a raw quarterback with two high school seasons at the position, he twirled the ball surprisingly well. Continue reading

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Fall camp preview: Quarterback

Barring injury, quarterback will be the position of least concern at UCLA. Brett Hundley will start, and he will vie for All-Pac-12 first-team honors — if not an eventual Heisman. The more intriguing battle through fall is which Bruin backs him up, or replaces him in case of injury.

Key returners: Let’s talk a little bit about Hundley first. The redshirt sophomore is UCLA’s best quarterback in a decade, and is talented enough that leaving for the NFL is a legitimate proposition. Right now, I’d bet he stays a third season — much like Andrew Luck and Sam Bradford did at Stanford and Oklahoma in recent years.

The main knock on Hundley last year was his decision-making; too often, the talented freshman held on to the ball when he should have tossed it away. He also didn’t slide well, having simply bowled through defenders until college. In spring practices, he showed marked improvement on all fronts.

Already gifted with a prototypical frame, he added lean muscle through the offseason, crucial given the 52 sacks he took last year and UCLA’s questions on the offensive line. If an injury forced Hundley to miss significant time, the Bruins would likely miss a bowl berth. Continue reading

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Signing Day schedule

Here are some Signing Day announcement times for prospective UCLA commitments.

OL Christian Morris — 9 a.m. PT
LB Isaac Savaiinaea — 9 a.m. PT
QB Asiantii Woulard — 9:30 a.m. PT (ESPNU)
LB Myles Jack — 1 p.m. PT
LB Cameron Judge — 3 p.m. PT (FoxSportsWest)
DT Eddie Vanderdoes — 5 p.m. PT

Morris and Judge might flip to Ole Miss and ASU, respectively, while Vanderdoes is the big fish everyone is chasing. Woulard, Savaiinaea and Jack seem like safe bets for UCLA.

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Who’s next for UCLA’s recruiting class?

UCLA’s recruiting class is ranked No. 6 in the country by Scout.com and No. 9 by Rivals.com, just the second time since 2002 that the school has landed in the top 10 on both lists. Can the Bruins make a push for the top five? Here’s a quick look at some of the top remaining targets.

QB Asiantii Woulard: 6-3, 205 — Rivals: 4*, Scout: 4* — UCLA was a latecomer to Woulard’s recruitment, but the dual-threat quarterback thoroughly enjoyed his visit to Westwood. He will announce on ESPNU next Wednesday, but all signs point to a cross-country trip for the Florida standout. His father had said that Clemson and UCLA were the frontrunners; the Tigers backed off his recruitment recently, with head coach Dabo Swinney cancelling an in-home visit.

DT Eddie Vanderdoes: 6-3, 310 — Rivals: 5*, Scout: 5* — One of the most highly recruited players in the country, Vanderdoes will announce his decision at 5 p.m. on Signing Day at Placer High. UCLA seems Continue reading

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