Every year there is a story similar to the one that sleeper Brandon Graves (5-9, 165, 4.5) from Encino (Calif.) Crespi went through his junior season. He didn't get a chance to play on the varsity level due to SS CIF transfer rules after catching 21 passes on the varsity level his sophomore season at Los Alamitos.
Graves showed off some impressive skills at UCLA's One Day Camp last Saturday. He talks about his UCLA camp experience.
"At the UCLA camp there were a lot of competition where I could showcase my skills," Graves said. "I think I did excellent at the camp, I caught everything thrown to me. My route running and my hands were good.
"UCLA's wide receiver coach, Reggie Moore told me I was at the top of his list and he made sure I went up against the best defensive backs at the camp.
"I was the only one who caught a pass against Joshua Shaw," Graves said. "I also went up against Shaquille Richardson and I caught passes against him, too."
Both Shaw and Richardson earned UCLA scholie opportunities because of their camp performance on Saturday so that gives you an idea of how well, Graves was playing at the camp. According to many in attendance, he was the best wide receiver in the afternoon session.
Graves happens to be lifelong friends with both Paul Richardson and Shaquille Richardson. The trio are so close that they considered themselves cousins. At one time they all played together at Los Alamitos. Does that mean they could end up a package deal?
"I actually want to play against them in college," Graves said. "We always go at each other in competitions to see who will win, what better place do that than in college?"
Graves is going to try and continue his camp success as he will be hitting the road this week to attend another camp.
"I'll be going to Oklahoma this Thursday," Graves said. "Then I'll be at USC's Rising Stars Camp in two weeks."
What is Graves looking for in a college football team?
"I'm looking for a team that spreads the ball around," Graves said. "A college that runs an offense that includes five wide, where I can use my versatility and show that not only can I catch the ball, but I can run the ball on reverses, too."
Graves has an early top five schools of Arizona, Cal, UCLA, USC and Oklahoma.