Former 5-Star LB Jaelan Phillips Transfers to Miami from UCLA

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistFebruary 22, 2019

MEMPHIS, TN - SEPTEMBER 16: Jaelan Phillips #15 of the UCLA Bruins celebrates a play against the Memphis Tigers on September 16, 2017 at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium in Memphis, Tennessee. Memphis defeated UCLA 48-45. (Photo by Joe Murphy/Getty Images)
Joe Murphy/Getty Images

Former UCLA linebacker Jaelan Phillips has decided to transfer to the University of Miami.

The player announced his decision Thursday on Twitter:

Jaelan Phillips ;🕴🏾® @JJPhillips15

The Wait is Over...Officially a HURRICANE 🙌🏽⛓🌴 I can’t wait to get to work, #TNM is going to be a problem for the opposition 🤞🏽💯 Thank you God for giving me a second chance 🙏🏾 the COMEBACK is going to be something serious https://t.co/yWhfKJnUlL

Phillips was a huge prospect out of high school, considered the No. 1 overall player in the 2017 class by 247Sports' composite rankings. However, he only appeared in 10 games in his first two years at UCLA before deciding to transfer out of the program.

He totaled 4.5 sacks and 41 tackles in his time with the Bruins.

Phillips left the program in December of his sophomore season due to injury problems after a concussion and other issues limited him to just four games played, per Tracy Pierson of 247Sports.

If he can stay healthy, the California native can be an impact player for the Hurricanes. At 6'5", 245 pounds, he has excellent size at the position with enough athleticism to be an elite pass-rusher at the college and possibly NFL level.

Meanwhile, this continues an impressive stretch of transfers joining Miami this offseason.

The program has added tons of talent since Manny Diaz took over for Mark Richt as head coach, including Ohio State quarterback Tate Martell, Auburn running back Asa Martin and USC safety Bubba Bolden. 

Like Phillips, all of these players were highly touted out of high school but haven't lived up to expectations in college.

He will also rejoin Chigozie Nnoruka, who transferred from UCLA to Miami as well.

Miami will hope these additions will be enough to bring the program back to prominence.