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UCLA Signs McElroy as Gridders Pick Their Schools


It didn't take long for Washington High wide receiver Jim McElroy to show the colors of his future school. At the UCLA-Arizona State basketball game on Jan. 21, McElroy wore a blue-and-gold hat and sweat shirt.

McElroy (6-foot, 165 pounds), one of the fastest receivers in the City Section, kept college recruiters guessing until the final two weeks before the signing period, which will begin Wednesday.

"UCLA was always one of my top two choices," he said. "But I also had a good time when I visited Washington. It came down to those two schools."

Often double- and triple-teamed, McElroy caught 18 passes for 308 yards and four touchdowns during the regular season. But he was also used as a tailback in midseason and ran 99 yards for a touchdown against Fremont in the City 3-A quarterfinals.

While McElroy will stay in the area to continue his football career, most of the other top Central City players will head out of Southern California.

Linebacker Gregory Gales (6-2, 210) has decided to attend Nevada Las Vegas and not Arizona State. Gales had 14 sacks, one interception and four fumble recoveries last season.

Jefferson defensive end John Johnson (6-4, 215) has made an unwritten commitment to play for Kansas, according to Hank Johnson, coach at Jefferson. Johnson, who was a three-year starter for the Democrats, had 32 tackles and six sacks. Jefferson defensive back Robert Robinson (5-9, 165) is leaning toward signing with Kansas, but is also being pursued by Oregon and Hawaii. He led the area with 12 interceptions, returning three for touchdowns. Johnson also has been recruited by Arizona, Oregon, Hawaii and Washington.

Loyola leads all area schools with players receiving scholarship offers. Defensive lineman Eric Scanlan (6-2, 225) has decided to attend Duke. One of the quickest lineman to play for the Cubs, Scanlan had 39 unassisted tackles, six sacks and two tackles behind the line of scrimmage. As reported earlier, Cubs running back Kadar Hamilton (6-0, 200) will attend Stanford and punter Anthony Scotti (6-2, 180) will play for Southern Methodist University.

Crenshaw linebacker Dennis Fomond (6-0, 210) chose California over UCLA on Wednesday, joining Cougar basketball star Tremaine Fowlkes, who signed with the Golden Bears in November, and former Cougar receiver Kofi Nartey. Fomond, a three-year starter, led his team with 179 tackles and had two interceptions. Cougar linebacker Darrell Mayo (6-1, 215) has committed to Nevada Las Vegas.

Dorsey's Norman Ysaguirre (6-0, 295) has narrowed his list to Fresno State, Oregon State and Wyoming. Ysaguirre, the City Times' 1993 Lineman of the Year, had 52 tackles, including 31 solo tackles, and six sacks. Don defensive back Jabulani Smith-Freeman (5-10, 165) will choose between Colorado State and Wyoming. Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, a Division I-AA school, is recruiting Dorsey running backs Che Johnson (6-1, 175) and Christopher Phillips (5-8, 175), free safety Max Kaleem (5-9, 160) and strong safety Gino Hutcherson (6-0, 185).

Locke quarterback Akili Roberson (6-0, 185) and receiver Russell Shaw (5-8, 165) have received scholarship offers to Nebraska and Nevada Las Vegas, respectively, but have not passed their college entrance examinations.

Los Angeles running back Shina Onaolapo, (6-1, 205) who rushed for 815 yards, is waiting for his latest test score. He is being recruited by Colorado State, Oregon State and Hawaii.

Fremont quarterback William Yates (6-0, 185), the City Times' 1993 Offensive Back of the Year, and receiver Andre Johnson (6-2, 170) will take trips to Hawaii this weekend. However, Yates is leaning toward signing with Nevada Las Vegas and Johnson is expected to sign with Kansas. Pathfinder linebacker Carl Bledman (6-0, 235) is considering University of San Diego, and Division III schools Humboldt State and Claremont-Mudd. All three are waiting for their December test scores.

Manual Arts running back Kareem Wafer (5-10, 180) and lineman Vone Russell (6-2, 250) are being recruited by San Jose State and Oregon State, but need to pass their entrance exams.

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