UCLA lands local linebacker

UCLA lands local linebacker

Despite sitting out his junior season due to a transfer, Upland (Calif.) linebacker Josh Woods was one of the hottest recruits this past spring and summer. He camped at UCLA in late June and was hopeful an offer would come and it when it did, he didn't waste any time jumping on it.

Josh Woods was one of the better linebacker prospects we saw this past spring on the 7v7 circuit showing the size, range and playmaking skills to be an impact player at the next level. At the Bruins camp, Woods measured in at 6-3, 210 pounds, ran a 4.58-40 and was dominant in every drill he took part in.

Arizona and Arizona State were first to offer and soon Boise State, Nevada and Washington State jumped on board as well. On Tuesday, Woods got the offer he was waiting for and jumped on it.

"I just committed to UCLA," Woods said. "Ever since the camp, they have been recruiting me really aggressively and said to stay patient, an offer would come. Coach Martin and Ulbrich were my main recruiters and I love both guys a lot. I actually talked to them both today and when they told me they were offering, I was pretty excited.

"I went and talked to my dad about it and told him I wanted to take it. I know UCLA doesn't have a lot of spots this year and I could fill a pretty big role. They signed all inside 'backers last year and they want me as a pass rushing outside 'backer. So after we talked, I called up Coach Brich and told him I wanted to be a Bruin and went ahead and committed. I still can't believe it, but It's an amazing feeling right now."

Ironically, Woods said he actually grew up a fan of UCLA's cross town rivals, USC.

"I liked USC a lot growing up, that was my team," Woods said. "After Jim Mora got there and they beat them two years ago, I started to gain some interest in UCLA. Then this past year, when they beat them again, I really started to lean that way and really wanted a UCLA offer.

"USC talked to me a little and wanted me to camp with them but I didn't feel that same connection. I really bonded well with all the coaches at UCLA and this is such a great fit for me on and off the field. It's a great academic school as well as a top 10 program plus it's close to home so I could't ask for anything more."

Woods said he would still like to take a few official visits but is solid in his commitment and will shut down his recruitment if the UCLA coaches prefer him not to visit anywhere.

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