National Signing Day 2012: Andrus Peat, Kyle Murphy, Aziz Shittu To Stanford

Who will be the big commits for the Bay Area colleges? What local talents are in the spotlight this summer and fall? Follow California Golden Blogs (Cal) and Rule of Tree (Stanford) for more extensive coverage of the recruiting game.

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Dominic Artis Picks UCLA Over Cal & Other Schools

It was only a matter of time before point guard Dominic Artis from Salesian High hit the big-time, and once he got his offer from the UCLA Bruins it appears he seemed set on heading to Westwood. Artis picked UCLA as his college destination this weekend, and it looks like neither of the two top Bay Area local prospects (who are both transferring to Findlay Prep in Nevada) will be playing their college ball in their region either. Evan Daniels of Scout has the report.

“I really like Ben Howland’s style of play,” Artis told Scout.com. “When I went down there for the visit all the guys were real cool and it just seemed like a good fit for me.”

...

“When they first started recruiting me they told me they really wanted me to be apart of their program,” he said. “Once I started playing better after Pangos, they really stressed to me that they needed a point guard and I could come in and play.”

UCLA gets a sterling young point guard with all sorts of promise at the next level. He can shoot, he can maintain multiple handles, he can get to plenty of spots on the floor, and he can pass the basketball.  Artis should be a nice young talent that can hopefully aid in landing Brandon Ashley as well, and help usher in the next age of UCLA basketball.

Dominic Artis has Stupid Handles... Best 2012 PG on the West Coast (via Yayareasfinest2006)


Dominic Artis Serving at PANGOS All-American Camp... #1 PG on the West Coast (via Yayareasfinest2006)

Cal always wanted to get Artis and head coach Mike Montgomery was on him early, which is why this is a pretty bitter defeat in terms of local recruiting. The Bears will have to regroup and try and find another point guard to fit their suddenly dire 2012 needs.

For more on UCLA basketball, check out Bruins Nation. For more on Cal basketball, head to the California Golden Blogs.

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Hardy Nickerson Jr., Bishop O'Dowd LB, Cal Football Recruiting Commit 2012

Hardy Nickerson Jr. is treading the footsteps of his famous father. He plays linebacker, he's a local Bay Area prospect, and he's now a California Golden Bear. Nickerson Jr. had coveted the Cal offer most of the offseason, and when he finally got it a month ago, it was only a matter of time before he decided to commit. Jim McGill at Bear Insider has the full story.

"I really like Cal because they're well-rounded, with their great academics and campus life," said Nickerson, Jr. "I also really like all the change that's happening there, with the new coaches, new facilities and new stadium. It just seems like there's a new excitement coming to Cal football and I want to be a part of it."

Nickerson Jr. is a late bloomer, and isn't highly rated by any of the recruiting services, but there's a lot of potential filled in his frame. He's a lot bigger than his dad was at his age, and he improved quite a bit from his sophomore to junior season (helping him earn the Cal offer from Kenwick Thompson). There's definitely a good chance he works his way up to starting level if he keeps the right attitude about it (and being a Nickerson, he's definitely got a good head on his shoulders).

Cal has now a plethora of strong California linebackers (and the second one in this class, as Michael Barton of De La Salle committed a few months ago) that should hopefully recharge what's been an erratic 3-4 defense the past few seasons.

For more on Cal football recruiting, the California Golden Blogs is your place to be.

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Zach Kline, Bart Houston Named 2011 Elite 11 Quarterbacks

It looks as if the East Bay will have two fine senior quarterbacks lining up under center this fall. Both San Ramon Valley's Zach Kline and De La Salle's Bart Houston have acquitted themselves admirably at the Elite 11 camp in Pepperdine. It should be no surprise that the two were among the final eleven named as Elite 11 quarterbacks in 2011. The Nike Elite 11 Coaching staff gave their assessment, and they placed Kline in 5th place and Houston in 10th according to Barton Simmons of 247Sports.

Kline has impressed everyone in attendance with his ball placement and the power in his arm. Brian Stumpf of ESPN stated that he won the strongest arm award, beating out the two big prospects in Gunner Kiel and Jameis Winston.  Houston's accuracy was his biggest attribute, and his ability to be solid and consistent all week ensured him a spot among the top 11.

For more on Cal football recruiting, California Golden Blogs is your destination. Bucky's 5th Quarter is best for Wisconsin football recruiting.

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Brandon Ashley Top 7: Arizona, Georgia Tech, Kentucky, Oregon, Syracuse, Texas, UCLA; Cal Eliminated

Forward Brandon Ashley will not be staying local in college, and he will not be staying local for the remainder of his high school days either. Ashley is transferring from Bishop O'Dowd to the renowned basketball factory, Findlay Prep in Henderson, Nevada for his senior season, reports Mitch Stephens of Prep Insider from the San Francisco Chronicle. Both Ashley and Salesian point guard Dominic Artis are heading to Findlay together, depriving the Bay Area of perhaps its two best senior high school basketball talents, and raises the possibility of an Artis-Ashley combo teaming up together in college as well.

Of more interest to college basketball recruit-nuts is Ashley's top seven. He named it last night at Kezar Pavilion in San Francisco while watching the Pro-Am. As expected, the Arizona Wildcats and Oregon Ducks made the cut, and there were five other schools on the list--the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, the Kentucky Wildcats, the Syracuse Orange, the Texas Longhorns, and the UCLA Bruins

"Those are the schools that recruited me the hardest and longest since Day 1," Ashley said. "It's definitely nice to be wanted. Those are the people you develop the strongest relationships with."

It's another blow to Mike Montgomery, who continues to struggle to land top-quality local recruits. Not even landing in Ashley's top 7 has to make you wonder if the California Golden Bears will have the mettle in the recruiting game to become a top-notch basketball school. It looks as if Monty will have to double his efforts with his coaching to keep the pressure up.

To discuss Cal basketball, head to the California Golden Blogs.


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Bryce Treggs, WR, Bellflower, Cal Football Recruiting Commit 2012

St. John's Bosco wide receiver Bryce Treggs has enjoyed a big coming-out party at this weekend's Opening 7-on-7 Tournament in Eugene. Treggs hauled in a number of big catches thrown to him by BYU commit Tyler Magnum, including an 80 yard score on Friday.  Of all the offensive players in attendance, Treggs was one of those guys that shined the most relative to the strength of his overall recruiting profile.

Today, Golden Bear Nation can share in his joy.  According to Bryan Fischer of CBS Sports, Treggs picked the California Golden Bears over schools like the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, Stanford Cardinal, ASU Sun Devils and UCLA Bruins on ESPNU this evening. Treggs had been hinting at joining up with the Bears for some time. His father Brian played with the Bears two decades ago as a receiver, and Treggs is also good friends with Cal quarterback commit Zach Kline.

Treggs is only the third recruit for the Golden Bears, but at least Cal has to be happy that they're getting the guys that want to be Bears.

For more on Treggs, head over to the California Golden Blogs.

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