The Hotline is delighted to provide Pac-12 fans with a weekly dive into the recruiting process through the eyes and ears of Brandon Huffman, the Seattle-based national recruiting analyst for 247Sports.
The following information, in his words, was provided to the Hotline on Sept. 29 …
*** Arizona is expected to have an important group of recruits in town for the Colorado game. The names have been kept under wraps, but one that we do know is four-star prospect Jayden Limar from Lake Stevens, Washington, the highest-rated running back on the West Coast in the prep class of 2023.
He has been committed to Notre Dame since the spring but visited Washington for a couple games and is now going to Arizona.
They were in Jayden’s final group when he picked Notre Dame, and there’s a chance he could still visit Oregon and UCLA later this fall, too.
But Notre Dame, which has a couple running back commitments, may have to hold onto Limar now that he’s taking visits elsewhere.
*** Oregon has two key official visitors, on each side of the line of scrimmage, this weekend.
Jaeden Moore, a three-star edge rusher who committed to the Ducks in August after participating in their camp, hasn’t taken his official visit. He will this weekend. They closed well with him, and that served as a springboard for closing with three-star linebacker Jerry Mixon and four-star athlete Kenyon Sadiq.
The first is four-star offensive lineman Iapani Laloulu. He visited Arizona in the spring, and it looked like he was heading there. But as Oregon offensive line coach Adrian Klemm has developed a relationship with him, and with his brother Faaope being a Duck, the Ducks have a chance to make a move.
The second and more significant visitor is the No. 1 offensive lineman in the West in the class of 2023: four-star tackle Spencer Fano, who’s from Provo. He named a top-four earlier this week of Michigan, Oregon, Brigham Young and Utah.
His brother plays for BYU, but Oregon was his favorite school growing up, and the success Penei Sewell had at Oregon — Sewell is from St. George, Utah — isn’t lost on him.
But the ace in the hole for Oregon is the fact that Klemm coached one of Fano’s favorite players ever, Xavier Su’a-Filo, at UCLA. They have a great relationship, and Klemm helping turn Su’a-Filo into a second-round draft pick is an important piece to Fano’s decision.
A third visitor for the Ducks plays on the other side of the line of scrimmage and is from Texas: four-star defensive lineman Johnny Bowens.
So Oregon is bringing in the big guys up front for the Stanford game, with an edge rusher who has committed (Moore), the two offensive linemen (Fano and Laloulu) and a defensive lineman (Bowens).
And another big one, albeit on an unofficial visit, is four-star offensive tackle Brandon Baker of Mater Dei High School, who’s the No. 2 tackle prospect nationally in the class of 2024. His older brother, Gary, played for the Ducks.
Brandon has offers from USC and UCLA and plenty of other schools. He was outspoken about USC’s decision to join the Big Ten and how that might affect the Trojans.
The Ducks have long been a factor, and they get him on campus this weekend.
*** Speaking of USC, the Trojans will be hosting several prospects for unofficial visits, including four-star linebacker Tackett Curtis from Many, Louisiana.
They also have a big contingent from St. John Bosco High School, and if you’re going to host a slew of players from one particular school, Bosco would be on the very short list.
A number of top prospects in the 2024 class will be on hand for the Arizona State game, including five-star safety Peyton Woodyard, four-star linebacker Kyngstonn Viliamu-Asa and four-star cornerback Marcelles Williams, plus Jshawn Frausto-Ramos, a four-star cornerback from the 2023 class who’s committed to Stanford.
In addition to the Bosco recruits, the Trojans are expected to welcome three elite commitments from the 2023 class: five-star receiver Zachariah Branch from Las Vegas and two players from Los Alamitos High School: five-star quarterback Malachi Nelson, the No. 3 overall recruit in the class, and four-star athlete Makai Lemon.
*** UCLA is limited in the number of recruits it can host because of the Friday night game (against Washington).
But one of the Bruins’ 2024 targets, three-star offensive tackle Manasse Itete from Modesto, will attend the game. He came to the U.S. from Africa to play basketball, and this is only his second year on the football field.
His teammate will be there, too: Jamari Phillips, a five-star shooting guard in the class of 2024 who’s being recruited by UCLA for basketball.
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