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UCLA football team gets Eli Ankou, waits on Jeremy Castro and Javon Williams

September 05, 2012|By Chris Foster
  • UCLA Coach Jim Mora leads his players onto the field before their victory over Rice on Thursday. Mora is still working out how to best use some of the team's 2012 recruits.
UCLA Coach Jim Mora leads his players onto the field before their victory… (Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles…)

A week into the season and UCLA is still trying to work out its 2012 recruiting class.

Eli Ankou, a defensive end expected to “gray-shirt” this season, participated in the Bruins’ practice Wednesday. A gray shirt is a player who has signed a letter of intent with a school, but sits out a year before starting his NCAA clock, giving him five years to play four.

Ankou had been expected to join the Bruins for spring practice.

Meanwhile, linebacker Jeremy Castro and wide receiver Javon Williams continue to work through eligibility issues.

Castro, a linebacker, will take the ACT test Saturday. If he scores high enough to be cleared by the NCAA, he will enroll at UCLA. Bruins coaches will then decide whether to have him sit out as a gray shirt or practice with the team and redshirt this season.

The NCAA Eligibility Center is still reviewing Williams’ paperwork, with no indication when a decision is expected on the wide receiver. Williams received a wavier to participate in training camp, but cannot play until cleared by the NCAA.

Ankou, who is 6 feet 3, 255 pounds, went through his first practice Wednesday. He played at  Red Lion Christian Academy in Bear, Del., last season, but is from Ottawa, Canada.

Coach Jim Mora said Ankou is a year away from being game-ready.

“Eli hasn’t played lot of American football,” Mora said. “He’s a good looking, smart kid, but he still has things to learn as far as technique.”

ALSO:

UCLA's basketball recruiting class draws NCAA scrutiny

Nebraska's quarterback has UCLA defense watching the ground

UCLA kicker Ka'imi Fairbairn learns from former Bruin Kai Forbath

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