UCLA lands pledge from RB Craig Lee

It isn’t customary for people to give out presents on their own birthday, but running back Craig Lee (Redlands, Calif./Redlands) did just that on Wednesday, as his commitment to the UCLA Bruins will certainly be treated as a gift by head coach Jim Mora and staff.

It isn’t an exceptional year for top tailback talent in California, which made it all the more important for the Bruins to grab the local standout. The four-star tailback is the No. 3 back in the state and held offers from more than a few prominent programs, including most of the Pac-12 as well as Nebraska and Notre Dame.

With Lee’s commitment, the Bruins are able to bounce back from losing a commitment from running back Keyante Green (McDonough, Ga./Eagles Landing) in a big way. Lee is the nation’s No. 28 running back and rushed for 1,534 yards and 15 touchdowns last season. Only twice was he held to fewer than 100 yards in a game and he scored four touchdowns on runs of more than 85 yards.

Capable of performing as an every-down back, Lee also caught 14 passes last season and performed well at this summer’s Gridiron Kings event.

He is commitment No. 11 for the Bruins, who continue to work on the offense with local players in this class. They have now added Lee, to go along with three impressive Southern California linemen.