The Arizona Wildcats hosted a big recruiting event on July 23 called The Closing. They had a large group of players come out that included current commits and high priority recruits. They even picked up two commitments from Mobile Christian School (Mobile, AL) safety Troy Young and Garden City Community College (Garden City, KS) linebacker Delshawn Phillips.
Some of the commits who made it to campus were Josh Brown, Scott Young, and Xavier Bell. It was the first visit to Arizona for the three defensive players and I was able to catch up with them to get their thoughts on the visit.
The 6-foot-even, 190 pound ball-hawking safety from Helix (La Mesa, CA) committed to Arizona on June 15th after camping with the Wildcats in San Diego. He had been wanting to make the trip to Tucson and was finally able to last Saturday.
"It felt like home and I was comfortable there with the coaches and players," Young said about his visit. "It really made me realize I made the correct decision with my commitment."
"My favorite part was being able to hang out with future teammates in the players lounge and just feeling as if we all already knew each other."
Young and his Helix 7-on-7 team have had a productive spring and summer. That team won four out of the five championships they competed in, with Young winning MVP in one of them. Helix has also been named the pre-season top ranked school in San Diego.
I think that Young is a great pass defender and has strong instincts. He will be an integral part of Arizona's future secondary and someone I see flying all over the defensive backfield.
ATEAM17 pic.twitter.com/Z5AsjgMmQd— Scottieo (@_scottieoo) July 24, 2016
Brown is a 6-foot-2, 222 pound linebacker out of power house Long Beach Poly (Long Beach, CA). I really like what he brings to the table: a good frame, lightning reaction time to the ball carrier, and the ability to drop back and defend the pass. He committed on June 13th after camping with the Wildcats in Long Beach and made the trip out to Tucson this past Saturday.
"I loved it out there (Arizona)," Brown said about his visit. "I can't picture myself anywhere else."
"Stepping onto that field! It gave me chills," Brown responded when asked about his favorite experience. "I've been dreaming of playing college football and there's just something about being on that field. Like I can just tell I'm going to make some amazing plays out there."
Brown also knows when he wants to make an official visit.
"There isn't a set date but I'm thinking about when Arizona plays USC."
I just want to thank God for giving me this opportunity without him none of this would be possible ! pic.twitter.com/Q42IGAv1bU— PHARAOH (@Jbrown3_) July 24, 2016
Bell stated that if he found a school that he really liked, he would commit and not drag the process out. He was true to his word as he was offered by Arizona on June 8 and committed 9 days later. He is a 6-foot-2, 190 pound safety from another power house in Mater Dei HS (Santa Ana, CA). I like his length and ability to come up and stop the run. Another trait that stands out is his aggressiveness. He is not afraid to bear down (see what I did there) on receivers and make plays.
He too made his first visit to Arizona this past Saturday.
"It (Arizona) was everything I knew it would be and more. Going out there and seeing what I was getting into took my level of excitement from 100 to 1000," Bell said about his visit. "I can't wait to see what the future holds with this group of ballers we have in the Class of '17. We are for sure a group you can't look over without hesitating."
"Everything was great on the visit, but you know how it is when it's time to grab your jersey number, a helmet, and a pair of gloves and flick up," he continued. "And when I walked out of the tunnel onto the field, I envisioned what it would be like to be a Wildcat on game day and I loved it!"
Bell also has an idea about when he would like to take an official visit to Tucson.
"I've been leaning towards the USC game, which is on October 15th."
On July 9, Bell and his Mater Dei 7-on-7 team made their way to Huntington Beach, CA for the Battle at the Beach event. While there, Mater Dei competed against Charter Oak (Covina, CA). If that name sounds familiar that's because it's the school Arizona commit Brian Casteel attends. Here is what Bell had to say about going up against his future teammate.
"It's always cool to compete with someone who you'll be joining in the future. The dude is a baller. I can't wait to have him out there scoring for me instead of against me."