UCLA’s Jake Brendel makes Pac-12 All-Academic first team (again!)

UCLA center Jake Brendel made his fourth appearance on the Pac-12 All-Academic first team, becoming the 10th player in conference history to do so. (Sarah Reingewirtz/Staff)

UCLA center Jake Brendel made his fourth appearance on the Pac-12 All-Academic first team, becoming the 10th conference player to do so. (Sarah Reingewirtz/Staff)

UCLA center Jake Brendel was named to the Pac-12’s All-Academic first team on Tuesday, earning the honor for the fourth straight year.

No football player in the conference has done that since Oregon State linebacker Cameron Collins, who accomplished the same feat in 2011. Only eight others in league history have ever pulled it off.

Brendel, a redshirt senior, has a 3.47 GPA in economics. He also holds the UCLA record with 50 career starts.

The Bruins were represented on the All-Academic second team by sophomore defensive lineman Matt Dickerson (3.16 GPA, political science). UCLA’s honorable mentions were tight end Colby Cyburt, fullback Taylor Lagace, longsnapper Christopher Longo, defensive back Dylan Luther, and quarterback Jerry Neuheisel.

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Four-star offensive guard Michael Alves commits to UCLA

UCLA has added a much needed prospect to its 2016 class in offensive guard Michael Alves.

Rivals.com rates he San Diego St. Augustine standout as a four-star recruit, and one of the top 20 guards in the country. Scout.com gives him three stars and a No. 2 ranking among California recruits at his position.

The 6-foot-4, 310-pound Alves is only the second offensive line recruit on track to sign with the Bruins next February. Three-star center Sean Auwae also picked UCLA back in August.

An offensive line that has allowed a conference-low 10 sacks this season will graduate center Jake Brendel, who has more career starts than any Bruin in school history. Starting left tackle Conor McDermott, a 23-year-old redshirt junior, is also a candidate to declare for the NFL draft.

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VIDEO: Center Jake Brendel on UCLA’s offensive line chemistry

UCLA has only allowed nine sacks this season, the lowest mark in the Pac-12 and the among the 16 best in the country. Center Jake Brendel credits that to the cohesion of the offensive line, one that exists even when the Bruins sub in reserves such as redshirt freshman Kolton Miller and true freshman Fred Ulu-Perry.

“The offense and the offensive line have really come together and really trusts in each other,” he said. “Built a bond that you really can’t find in other places. … It’s not always the position that you play at or the people that are at each position. It’s more of the friendship and the bond that you have.”

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