Matt Slater, 5-11, 185, Anaheim (Calif.) Servite, took an official visit to UCLA last weekend, and said that he was very impressed.
“It was really nice,” Slater said. “It was even better than what I expected. Not only did I have a really good time, but I really enjoyed the campus. I met the dean of the business school, and enjoyed talking to him. So, it was great in many ways.”
The wide receiver who had 38 catches for 707 yards this season said that one of the best aspects of visiting UCLA was hanging out with the other recruits. He said that the group had a great time watching the highlight videos of each other. “It was great to be with those guys, like Maurice Drew and Milvon James, Joe Cowan and the two guys from Poly. That was fun. In the highlight reels, Maurice Drew looked really good, of course. They all did. They’re being recruited by UCLA.”
Slater, a speedster who has run a 10.77 in the 100 meters, has already visited Oregon unofficially, and will visit Dartmouth officially this coming weekend. There is a possibility he could also visit Brown, but he doesn’t know when he’d be able to fit it in, possibly sometime during the week. “But signing day is next Wednesday, so I don’t have much time left,” Slater said. “I think if I haven’t decided by next week, I could still possibly trip to Brown. They said they’d save me a spot.”
When it comes to Oregon, Slater said that the situation is up in the air at present. “I’m still talking to them about what’s happening. It’s pretty complicated with them right now. I still don’t really know what’s up there. We’ll see what’s going to happen. It might have something to do with them holding a spot for another player, but I don’t know.”
UCLA, though, for Slater has some advantages. “It’s close to home, even though that really wouldn’t matter. I mean, I could stay close or go anywhere. I really like the coaches at UCLA. I sat down with Coach Dorrell to talk to him. That’s when he offered me a scholarship. Coach Embree, the receiver coach, is a nice guy. He recruited me when he was Colorado, so he’s been very consistent through this whole process.”
Right now, though, Slater said that he doesn’t have a favorite.
He did say, though, that education is a big priority for him. Slater, who has a 3.8 GPA and scored an 1180 on his SAT, said, “Education is a little bit more important than football. Football is not a guarantee. You’re one injury away from being done. One play. You can’t rely on it. I really want to take advantage of the opportunity I’m going to get and get a degree.”
Slater’s parents, which includes his father, former Los Angeles Rams star lineman, Jackie Slater, support him in any decision he’ll make. “They want what’s best for me. They want me to go the school where I think I fit best. Whether that’s in Los Angeles, close to them, or some other place.”
Slater doesn’t have any in-home visits planned for this weekend; he said that he had a few coaches – including UCLA’s Embree – come by last week. The plan, though, is to visit Dartmouth with his parents this weekend and then hopefully have a decision. “Once I trip to Dartmouth, I think I’ll be able to make a decision,” he said. “I’ll probably tell the coaches a day before or so, but I think it could be soon after my trip to Dartmouth. I realize I don’t have a lot of time and it’s going to have to be real soon.”