football

UCLA lands top-flight safety

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The Bruins have been on safety E.J. Woods (6-1, 195, 4.56) from Encino (Calif.) Crespi ever since he attended their football camp last June when he was going into his junior year at Santa Monica, Calif., high school, though he changed high schools, UCLA stayed him and he with them.
When Woods committed to UCLA yesterday it gave the Bruins their third safety prospect for the day joining Rahim Moore and Johnathan Franklin giving the Bruins one of the best group of safety prospects for the class of 2008.
While it is only March there could end up being more top-flight defensive back prospects headed to Westwood.
The reason Woods chose the Bruins seems to be a recurring theme.
"I chose UCLA because they stressed my academics first," Woods said. "Coach DeWayne Walker and UCLA's new wide receiver Eric Scott and really have a great relationship.
"Both Coach Walker and Coach Scott made it clear that there are no guarantees that any of us will make it to the NFL," Woods said. "So if football doesn't work having a UCLA degree means so much and carries a lot of weight. With a UCLA degree you can still go out and get a good job and do very well."
Athletically UCLA also has some enticements.
"Being coached by Coach Walker is huge and UCLA is graduating 10 defensive players after next season," Woods said. "So the opportunity for early playing time presents itself.
Playing with safety Rahim Moore also is attractive to the talented safety.
"Rahim and I were talking that we will win Pac 10 championships together at UCLA," Woods said. "And we will beat USC again and again and again."
Besides UCLA, Moore had offers on the table from Oregon and Ole Miss. Ohio State, Michigan, LSU, Alabama, Auburn, Miami, West Virginia, Washington and Washington State were also showing recruiting interest in Woods.
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