Brian Price Opts For NFL
Jan. 6, 2010
UCLA junior All-America defensive tackle Brian Price has decided to forego his senior season and apply for the 2010 NFL Draft, he announced today at an 11 am news conference in the Morgan Center.
'Congratulations to Brian Price for an unbelievable job well done,' said Bruin head coach Rick Neuheisel. 'He worked hard and did everything we asked him to do here. While we would like to have him at UCLA next season, we understand the decision. I want to remind him that 'Once a Bruin, Always a Bruin.
'He can now go on to become a great role model for the players in our program who are trying to climb the same ladder that he has. We will welcome him back anytime. I know that getting his degree is important to his family and I am sure that will happen when the time is right.'
'It was a difficult decision to make', said Price. 'I talked to my coaches and my family and I have decided to forego my senior season at UCLA.
'I want to thank coach Neuheisel for giving me this opportunity, thank my family and thank God. I also want to thank (defensive line) coach (Todd) Howard and (defensive coordinator) coach (Chuck) Bullough and (head athletic performance) coach (Mike) Linn - this would not be possible without them. I also want to thank (former UCLA head) coach (Karl) Dorrell and (former defensive coordinator) coach DeWayne Walker; coach (Robert) Garrett, my high school coach; and coach Eric Scott, who brought me to UCLA.
'I looked at all the factors. I could help win more games, get my degree, get more preparation for the NFL and make sure I was mature enough were reasons to stay. I talked to my parents and coaches and I feel I am ready to make the move.'A degree from UCLA will take me a long way after football is done and make my mom and sisters proud. I will now work to improve physically - get stronger and faster so when the time is right, I am ready.'
One of the best defensive tackles in the college game, Price, a true junior, was named first-team All-America by the American Football Coaches Assn. and SI.com, second-team by the Walter Camp Football Foundation, Sporting News, Rivals.com, Phil Steele and Scout.com and third-team by Associated Press. He was also selected Pac-10 Pat Tillman Defensive Player of the Year and first-team All-Pac-10. He was a semifinalist for the Bednarik Award (nation's top defender) and a quarterfinalist for the Lott Trophy (nation's best defender on and off the field). He was also on the 'Watch List' for the 2009 Nagurski Trophy (both for nation's best defensive player), Outland Trophy (nation's top interior lineman) and Rotary Lombardi Award (nation's top lineman). In addition, he was the co-defensive winner of UCLA's Henry R. 'Red' Sanders Award for Most Valuable Player. He was voted first-team All-Pac-10 by the league's coaches in 2008.
Price ranked No. 3 (tied) in the NCAA and led the Pac-10 with 1.81 tackles for loss per game (the No. 2 player in the Pac-10 was at 1.29) during the regular season. He led the team with 23.5 tackles for loss and 7.0 sacks (7th in Pac-10) and made 48 tackles on the year.
Price ranks second on the UCLA single-season tackles for loss list (23.5) and is No. 1 among defensive tackles. He also ranks second in school history with 44.5 career tackles for loss and his career average of 1.3 TFL per game is No. 3 nationally among active players.
In the opener versus San Diego State, Price made three tackles, one for loss. At Tennessee, he made a career-best two quarterback sacks and two other tackles for loss among his five stops. Against Kansas State, he made three tackles. At Stanford, he made two tackles, both for loss. Against Oregon, Price made four tackles, including a 21-yard sack, plus a second tackle for loss. Price had four tackles versus California, including 1.5 for loss and 1.0 sacks. He had two tackles, including one for loss, at Arizona. At Oregon State, he had one tackle assist (0.5 for loss). He made four tackles, 1.0 sacks and 1.5 tackles for loss, in the win over Washington.
In the win at Washington State, he made four tackles, tying for the team lead, including 3.0 for loss (10 yards). In the win over Arizona State, he dominated the line of scrimmage, making 4.0 tackles for loss, including 2.0 sacks, among his career-high six tackles. He also forced a fumble that was returned for a touchdown, recovered a fumble and broke up one pass. Against USC, he made five tackles, including 2.0 for loss and also forced a fumble. In the EagleBank Bowl win over Temple, he made five tackles (four solos), including 1.0 for loss.
He made 44.5 tackles for loss in his final 29 games (1.53/g) dating back to the 2007 season.