Freshman Darnay Holmes brings ‘Deion Sanders swagger’ to UCLA

Defensive back Darnay Holmes (1) tries to tackle running back Bolu Olorunfunmi during UCLA’s Spring Showcase. (Photo by Keith Birmingham/Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)

Perhaps the greatest compliment Kenny Young can give Darnay Holmes is to compare the young freshman to his favorite athlete.

“Man, (he has) that Deion Sanders swagger,” Young said Wednesday at Pac-12 Media Days. “He’s just a nasty, raw guy and I love his game. And he’s just a baby.”

Holmes lists Sanders as his favorite famous athlete on his UCLA biography. It’s easy to see why. The 5-foot-10, 190-pounder was a dynamic two-way player in high school, finishing his senior year at Calabasas High with 69 receptions for 1,214 yards and 14 touchdowns, but will get his start at UCLA as a defensive back.

Holmes ran with the first-string defense during spring camp. He’s a natural, Young said. The senior linebacker recalled moments during spring practice when Holmes played like a veteran, disguising coverages by showing blitz before the snap. Continue reading “Freshman Darnay Holmes brings ‘Deion Sanders swagger’ to UCLA” »

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Kenny Young named to Wuerffel Award Watch List

Linebacker Kenny Young was named to the Wuerffel Award,
honoring football players who excel at community service, athletics and academics. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken, File)

Kenny Young already earned two watch list nominations for his on-field play and the senior linebacker added a third Tuesday for his off-field work.

Young was named to the watch list for the Wuerffel Award, which honors the FBS player who best combines community service with athletic and academic achievement.

Young was awarded the 2017 Academic & Student Services Success Award at UCLA, which is given to student-athletes who have developed into self-sufficient learners. He is also a three-time Dean’s List Member (Fall 2016, Winter 2017 and Spring 2017).

A list of the Bruins included on watch lists so far:

  • Josh Rosen (Maxwell — best college player)
  • Kenny Young (Bednarik — best defensive player; Butkus — best linebacker; Wuerffel — best community servant)
  • Scott Quessenberry (Rimington — best center; Outland — best interior lineman)
  • Austin Roberts (Mackey — best tight end)
  • Jaleel Wadood (Thorpe — best defensive back)
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Kenny Young on watch list for Butkus Award

Kenny Young was named to the watch list for the Butkus Award, which is given to the nation’s best linebacker. (Photo by Keith Birmingham/Pasadena Star News)

UCLA linebacker Kenny Young added a second watch list honor to his preseason resume Monday as the senior was named to the watch list for the Butkus Award, which honors the nation’s top linebacker.

The middle linebacker earned second-team All-Pac-12 recognition last year. His 90 total tackles were second on the team, and he added 8.5 tackles for loss, five sacks, one interception and three fumble recoveries. He ranked sixth in the Pac-12 with 7.5 tackles per game.

Former UCLA linebacker Eric Kendricks is UCLA’s only Butkus Award winner. The current Minnesota Viking claimed the trophy in 2014 after leading the nation in solo tackles per game with 7.8.

A list of the Bruins included on watch lists so far:

  • Josh Rosen (Maxwell — best college player)
  • Kenny Young (Bednarik — best defensive player, Butkus — best linebacker )
  • Scott Quessenberry (Rimington — best center; Outland — best interior lineman)
  • Austin Roberts (Mackey — best tight end)
  • Jaleel Wadood (Thorpe — best defensive back)
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