As a return to his home state looms this week, UCLA linebacker Myles Jack talked his contentious history with the Washington fanbase, controlling his emotions, playing running back, and what he thinks of the Huskies’ two-way star Shaq Thompson.
UCLA’s trip to Washington on Nov. 8 will kick off at 4 p.m. on Fox Sports 1. It will mark the Bruins’ final regular-season game away from the Rose Bowl in 2014.
After a bye week following the visit to the Huskies, the team will then host USC on Nov. 22 (start time TBA) and Stanford on Friday, Nov. 28 (12:30 p.m., ABC).
» Just a month after stepping down (or being forced out) as Cal’s athletic director, Sandy Barbour parlayed an uneven tenure in the Bay Area into a bigger job at Penn State — one that will pay her $700,000 per year.
» Stanford’s Josh Huestis went to the Oklahoma City Thunder as the 29th overall pick in the NBA draft, but will head to the D-League rather than sign his guaranteed rookie contract. Grantland’s Zach Lowe explains why.
But this? This is the most important of them all. With Pac-12 Media Days — schedule here — kicking off this morning, I have compiled the five best names from each team in the conference.
Without further ado …
Arizona: Sir Thomas Jackson, Antonio Smothers, Tra’Mayne Bondurant, Brogan Kemmerly, Abraham Mendivil
Not great depth here, as the latter two names sacrifice catchiness in favor of length. Still, Sir Thomas Jackson alone is an MVP candidate.
Arizona State: Ezekial Bishop, Demetrius Cherry, Zane Gonzalez, Jaxon Hood, Jaelen Strong
A solid quintet that lacks a superstar.
Cal: Hardy Nickerson, Avery Sebastian, Bryce Treggs, Brennan Scarlett, Maximo Espitia
A nice throwback in Hardy Nickerson, bookended by a name that makes me want to re-watch Russell Crowe take on a despotic Joaquin Phoenix. Continue reading
Some six months after turning down a chance to become Washington’s head coach, Jim Mora severed another tie with his home state.
Heading into his third season at UCLA, Mora has listed his Washington for $3.149 million according to the LA Times. The two-story, six-bedroom house in Yarrow Point is listed on Realtor.com as having been built in 1918 and renovated in 2008, and comes complete with a theater room, gaming center, seven built-in flatscreen TVs, a wet bar, and an artist studio. The master suite also opens up to a deck with lake views.
Still, it’s hardly the highest-priced property in the neighborhood. According to Realtor.com, three homes in the area have recently sold for between $4.35 million to $6.4 million. Several others are listed for more than $3.9 million, including a pair of three-bedroom houses.
Mora could probably buy up one of those too if he wanted. Currently living in Manhattan Beach, he is slated to earn $3.25 million in base salary this year, as well as up to $930,000 in performance bonuses.
– Jordan Adams is hitting on all cylinders heading down the late stretch of the season. The sophomore guard lit up the Huskies for a career-high 31 points in UCLA’s 91-82 win — a total that could have easily been higher if not for a second-half bout with cramps.
Adams scored 10 of UCLA’s first 14 points to set the pace early, and established the offense by earning trips to the line. He also exited a good portion of the second half and didn’t score in the final eight minutes, but his last six points came when the Bruins only led by one point.
UCLA’s most natural scorer hitting his stride in March obviously bodes well for a team that’s angling for a top-five tournament seed. His free throw rate has dropped to 20th in the conference compared to 13th last season, but he his nine free throw attempts were his highest since Dec. 7. Continue reading
Four-star safety Budda Baker announced his decision to commit to Washington this evening, picking the Huskies over UCLA on Seattle TV station KING 5.
Baker, who is close to UCLA linebacker Myles Jack, is the top-rated recruit out of Washington and No. 10 at his position nationally. The Bellevue High standout cited his family as a main reason for sticking close to home, and was accompanied by relatives in the KING 5 studio.
The Bruins have four-star prospects Jaleel Wadood and Adarius Pickett committed in in this year’s secondary class, as well as three-star cornerback Denzel Fisher.
Four-star safety Budda Baker has decommitted from Oregon, opening up the possibility that UCLA adds another defensive back to its 2014 class.
Baker had Washington and the Bruins as his two other finalists before announcing for the Ducks last month. He played with UCLA linebacker Myles Jack at Bellevue High, and actually helped Jack with his pass coverage last summer. Continue reading
– Bronzell Miller might be dead by the time you read this. The former Utah linebacker is battling multiple myeloma, a cancer of the plasma cells, and may only have a week left to live.
– Bellevue standout and UCLA recruiting target Budda Baker is still waiting for the release of his brother Robert, imprisoned for first-degree robbery and possession of a firearm.
– How did Tad Boyle turn Colorado into a contender?
– Why Stanford will beat Arizona State for a Rose Bowl berth, according to the Bay Area News Group’s Jon Wilner.
– Steve Sarkisian has already hired two members of his Washington staff. Might defensive coordinator Justin Wilcox be the next to head to USC?