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November 30, 2022

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UNLV FOOTBALL:

Randle already feels at home as a Rebel

California RB looks to earn carries right from go

Bradley Randle Highlights

2009 recruits already signed

  • *Kenny Brown, DB, 6-0, 180, College of the Canyons
  • *Alex Degiacomo, DB, 6-1, 190, El Camino College
  • *Warren Ziegler, DB, 6-1, 180, College of San Mateo

2009 recruits signed Wednesday

  • Brandon Babineaux, WR, 6-4, 190, Folsom (Calif.) High
  • Mark Barefield, WR, 6-0, 176, North Mesquite (Texas) High
  • Jordan Barrett, LB, 6-3, 225, Notre Dame (Calif) High
  • *B.J. Bell, DE, 6-4, 245, Santa Ana Community College
  • Courtney Bridget, CB, 6-3, 185, Dunbar (Md.) High
  • Charles Childers, DB, 6-0, 182, Bishop Gorman High
  • Mike Grant, DB, 5-11, 185, Sierra Community College
  • Caleb Herring, QB, 6-3, 185, Citrus Hill (Calif.) High
  • Sidney Hodge, DB, 5-8, 162, Palo Verde High
  • Nate Holloway, DT, 6-3, 332, Spring Valley High
  • Thomas Kilgore, OL, 6-5, 305, San Joaquin Memorial (Calif.) High
  • Andrew Mack, OG, 6-3, 285, Plano West (Texas) High
  • Bradley Randle, RB, 5-8, 195, Vista Murrieta (Calif.) High
  • Irshad Stolden, WR, 5-9, 180, Rancho Cucamonga (Calif.) High
  • Marcus Sullivan, WR/RB, 5-8, 162, Cheyenne High
  • John Therrell, DB, 6-0, 170, Bishop Gorman High
  • Reggie Umuolo, LB, 5-11, 195, Centennial (Ariz.) High
  • Robert Waterman, OL, 6-4, 275, West Ranch (Calif.) High
  • Doug Zismann, C, 6-2, 273, Shadow Mountain (Ariz.) High
  • *denotes junior college transfer

According to Bradley Randle, nothing brings a recruiting class together quite like technology.

Not long after the 5-foot-8, 195-pound running back out of Vista Murrieta (Calif.) High committed to UNLV back in late November, he began getting some strange friend requests on MySpace.

"I was like 'Who is this guy?'" Randle recalled. "I saw 'Rebels' on his page, put two and two together, and we just kicked it off."

Randle and several members of the 2009 Rebels recruiting class began swapping contact info over the popular social network, and even took in YouTube highlight videos of one another.

While Randle has already built up some nice rapport with his fellow newcomers, expect a pretty warm welcome from everyone in the program when he arrives in the summer, as he may have the chance to make the biggest impact right away of any of coach Mike Sanford's incoming freshmen.

"He's gonna compete (for the starting job)," Sanford said on Wednesday. "No question."

The Rebels have a hole to fill in the backfield following the graduation of primary back Frank Summers.

Returing will be C.J. Cox, who rushed for 191 yards and a score as a freshman, Channing Trotter, who totaled 112 yards on 11 carries, and Imari Thompson, a speedy redshirt freshman-to-be who was shelved after hurting his ankle in the season's third game.

Randle, though, may bring the best combination of both power, speed and homerun hitting ability to the table.

"He is a very special player," Sanford said. "I would compare him -- I know it's a huge comparison -- he is a Barry Sanders type of back. Not gonna say he's as good as Barry Sanders, I'm not gonna make that claim, but he is very fast, very elusive, makes people miss, just one of those slasher-type guys."

In terms of touts from recruiting services, Randle is the highest-regarded high school senior coming into the UNLV program for next season. He was ranked by Rivals.com as the nation's No. 50 all-purpose back.

However, it's well known that those rankings and 50 cents will get you a bag of Doritos out of just about any vending machine.

His numbers speak much louder, having rushed for 1,605 yards and 19 scores as a senior, averaging 6.7 yards per carry. Randle also caught 17 passes for 210 yards and a pair of TDs.

"I'm the type of guy where, if it's fourth and inches, or it's third and long or first and 10, my ability is just to hit the hole, get from A to B, and my goal is a touchdown every time I get the ball," he said. "If not a touchdown, a 50- or a 60-yard run."

Added Sanford: "It is nice to have a big back, and we're gonna miss Frank Summers, but I also think that we've got more depth at that position when you put C.J. Cox, Imari Thompson, Channing Trotter and then bring Bradley Randle into the mix. That's a good group."

Randle's reasons for choosing UNLV sounded much like those given by California quarterback prospect Caleb Herring, in that he appreciated the coaching staff's honesty in telling him that the opportunity to play is there, but it won't be simply handed over.

As a kid who speaks with plenty of confidence, Randle seems fit to handle that challenge.

"They told me things I'd like to hear, and they put their word on it," Randle said. "I'm not looking to redshirt or anything like that. My goal is to rotate in or start, but I know I'm gonna have to work hard to do that, so I'm ready.

"They said I can do it, so I'm looking to do it. They said you've got the skills to do it. I'm ready to prove it, ready to do it, ready for the next level."

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