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UCLA football gains third class of 2021 commit in 4-star recruit Devin Kirkwood

Four-star athlete Devin Kirkwood committed to UCLA football Thursday. Kirkwood recorded 34 tackles and six passes defended as a cornerback and safety at Junipero Serra in 2019. (Courtesy of Nick Lucero/Rivals.com)

By Sam Connon

May 14, 2020 5:42 p.m.

Chip Kelly has been working from home over the past few months, but he has still managed to reel in multiple recruits during quarantine.

The coach’s newest addition is his highest-ranked yet.

Four-star athlete Devin Kirkwood committed to UCLA football Thursday afternoon. Kirkwood – whose mother attended UCLA – is the third player in the class of 2021 to commit to the Bruins but is the only four-star of the bunch so far.

The Gardena, California, native narrowed his potential destinations to UCLA, Colorado, Notre Dame, California and Arizona State on May 5.

Immediately after Kirkwood committed, the Bruins took over the No. 6 spot in the 2021 Pac-12 recruiting rankings and are now ranked 71st nationally by 247Sports. UCLA’s average recruit rating of 88.40 ranks fourth in the Pac-12, behind only Oregon, USC and Utah.

Kirkwood is the No. 22 prospect in California and No. 231 prospect in the country according to 247Sports’ composite rankings, making him the fourth-highest nationally ranked commit since Kelly joined the program, behind only rising sophomore offensive lineman Sean Rhyan, rising junior wide receiver Chase Cota and incoming freshman linebacker Damian Sellers.

The Junipero Serra High School product has experience on both sides of the ball. Kirkwood played wide receiver, cornerback and safety in high school, but the 6-foot-3 athlete projects to primarily play corner at UCLA, according to Bruin Report Online.

Kirkwood racked up 34 tackles, six passes defended and one interception in 11 games his junior year.

247Sports recruiting expert Greg Biggins told Bruin Report Online that Kirkwood could become an “impact upper-tier Power 5 starter” and a “future mid round NFL draft pick.” 

With the status of his final high school season up in the air because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Kirkwood may not get a chance to add more game film to his resume this fall. Both UCLA and Junipero Serra are in Los Angeles County, which does not yet have a set end date to its “safer at home” order.

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Sam Connon | Sports senior staff
Connon is currently a Sports senior staff writer for the football and men's basketball beats. He was the Sports editor for the 2019-2020 academic year, an assistant Sports editor on the baseball, men's soccer, cross country, men's golf and women's golf beats from 2018-2019 and a reporter on the baseball and women's basketball beats from 2017-2018. Connon also contributes movie reviews for Arts & Entertainment and co-hosts Daily Bruin Sports' weekly podcast, "Out of Bounds." Connon is a rising fourth-year Communication student from Winchester, Massachusetts.
Connon is currently a Sports senior staff writer for the football and men's basketball beats. He was the Sports editor for the 2019-2020 academic year, an assistant Sports editor on the baseball, men's soccer, cross country, men's golf and women's golf beats from 2018-2019 and a reporter on the baseball and women's basketball beats from 2017-2018. Connon also contributes movie reviews for Arts & Entertainment and co-hosts Daily Bruin Sports' weekly podcast, "Out of Bounds." Connon is a rising fourth-year Communication student from Winchester, Massachusetts.
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