As reported by Scout.com's Greg Biggins, the UCLA Bruins received a commitment from Kenneth Clark—a highly regarded 4-star defensive tackle from Carter High School in Rialto, Calif.
Clark became the ninth known commitment for the Bruins thus far in the 2013 recruiting class, and it was a big pick-up for UCLA.
The Inland Empire product chose the Bruins over offers from Washington, Cal, Boise State, Oregon, Miami and Nebraska, among others.
At 6'2" 285 pounds, Clark is an impressive prospect physically. His quickness is noteworthy, as is the intensity with which he plays. In addition, the versatility that Clark brings to the table is something of great appeal to coaching staff.
He's stout enough to play as a nose guard, but he's quick enough to play as a defensive end, as well. With uber-talented 5-star recruit Ellis McCarthy set to possibly man the nose tackle position well into the future, Clark's ability to play defensive end in the Bruins' 3-4 alignment could get him on the field quickly.
According to Scout.com, Clark is rated as the 19th best defensive tackle prospect in the country.
The commitment is significant for a number of reasons. It's always good to have a premier talent at a position of need commit—especially when the west coast isn't exactly known as a hotbed for stud defensive line prospects.
Also, Clark comes from the Inland Empire. This isn't an area that UCLA recruited well at all prior to the current coaching staff.
Both defensive backs coach Demetrice Martin and running backs coach Steve Broussard have made a concerted effort in tapping into the area's bountiful amount of talent.
Don't look now, but the talent being brought to Westwood on the defensive side of the ball is quite impressive.
In the 2012 class (along with the 5-star prospect McCarthy), UCLA was able to land talented 4-star prospects such as defensive backs Ishmael Adams and Marcus Rios, and linebackers Aaron Porter and Jeremy Castro.
Currently, UCLA has three 4-star linebackers committed (Cameron Judge, Myles Jack, Deon Hollins) to go along with Clark.
They are also doing very well with a myriad of elite defensive back prospects—most notably Priest Willis, Tahaan Goodman, L.J. Moore and Hatari Byrd.
The future in Westwood is quite bright. Of course, the caveat here is that the team needs to have a solid season on the gridiron. Truthfully, all of these early commitments could be for naught if UCLA has another below-par season.
However, the interest level in the program from big time recruits is pretty high at the moment.