Betiku details UCLA pledge
Wole Betiku thought about taking all five official visits, prolonging the recruiting process and waiting to make a commitment.
But after a whole lot of thinking, the Gardena (Calif.) Serra four-star defensive end chose to end everything on Thursday by committing to UCLA.
His relationship with the Bruins' coaching staff played a tremendous role.
"It's a great school, a great academic program and coming from where I come from it's a win-win situation in case football doesn't work out for me," Betiku said. "I like the coaches. I'm comfortable with them. They kept it real with me.
"I've been talking to Angus (McClure) for a long time. All the coaches like Angus, Adrian Klemm, coach (Jim) Mora, they're the ones I feel most comfortable with. I feel at home when I'm with them. I feel that was important to me. They say follow your heart and if you're happy with your situation you're going to ball out over there. I just followed my heart and I prayed about it, I thought about it, my mind told me it was right and I just did it."
Penn State, Florida, Florida State, Notre Dame and Texas A&M were some of the other favorites for Betiku and recently USC made a serious push back into his recruitment.
The Bruins always stood out, though, and after talking with Arizona commit and Serra teammate Khalil Tate, Betiku was ready to finish things off.
"I kind of felt it was right a while ago," Betiku said. "The longer I took with it the more options were coming in my head. Sometimes I felt like I wanted to go out-of-state. Sometimes I felt like I wanted to go someplace else.
"I spoke to Khalil, I was talking to my coaches and everyone else and seeing what they had to say. Khalil told me the best thing is to just commit to the school I feel like is the best fit for me and where I feel at home and where I feel happy. Once everything is out of the way I just have to focus on football and improving as a player and everything will fall into place.
"You can make it more complicated for yourself and your mind is not going to be at rest. If I play in the Pac-12 I get to play against guys I played against in high school so it's the same crowd watching me instead of going to the South where nobody knows me."
The four-star defensive end who finished with 59 tackles and 12 sacks in his first year of playing football said he does not plan to take any other official visits.