Walk-On Running Back Troy Leigber Commits to UCLA Football

For the second day in a row, the Bruins picked up a commitment from a local preferred walk-on prospect.

National signing day hasn’t been the splashiest for the Bruins, but they did make an addition to next season’s roster.

Class of 2023 running back Troy Leigber committed to UCLA football on Wednesday, he announced on Twitter. Leigber earned a preferred walk-on offer from the Bruins back on Jan. 4, and he cashed it in after stopping by Westwood for an unofficial visit at the end of the month.

Leigber also had standing offers from Army, Rice, UPenn, San Diego, Air Force, Northern Colorado, UC Davis, Lindenwood and Cal Poly.

UCLA now has six preferred walk-on commits in the current cycle, with Leigber joining wide receiver Carter Shaw, long snapper Trent Middleton, edge rusher Peter Bario, offensive lineman Kory Symington and linebacker Wyatt Mosier. Leigber may not be the only one joining the backfield, though, since Mosier thanked running backs coach DeShaun Foster in his announcement tweet Tuesday.

Leigber had solid experience out of the backfield through his first three seasons at Laguna Hills High School (CA), but he really broke out as a senior with the Hawks this past fall. Getting 321 carries across 16 games, Leigber racked up 2,695 yards and 44 touchdowns on the ground alone.

Adding in his 436 yards and five touchdowns as a pass-catcher, Leigber finished the season with roughly 3,000 yards and 50 touchdowns from scrimmage. Leigber also added 467 yards as a kick returner, and he recorded 16 tackles and four interceptions as a safety.

All of that production helped Leigber earn Orange County Offensive Player of the Year honors from OC Varsity, as well as CalHiSports’ California Player of the Year award. MaxPreps, meanwhile, put Leigber on their All-State First Team right alongside Georgia-bound four-star Roderick Robinson – a former UCLA commit – and four-star Utah signee Dijon Stanley.

Leigber is a three-star recruit, according to 247Sports, but he is not rated by any of the other major outlets. In 247Sports’ rankings, Leigber comes in as the No. 146 player in California and the No. 134 safety in the country. If he were categorized as a running back, Leigber would be ranked No. 9 at his position in the state.

The 6-foot-1, 200-pound prospect fits the mold that Foster and coach Chip Kelly have found plenty of success with over the past few years. Zach Charbonnet, Brittain Brown, TJ Harden, Colson Yankoff, 2023 signee Isaiah Carlson, Army transfer Anthony Adkins and Ball State transfer Carson Steele are all at least 6-foot-1 and 200 pounds.

With Steele, Adkins, Harden, Carlson, Deshun Murrell and Keegan Jones already on the depth chart for 2023, it is unlikely Leigber will contribute right away. There have been other former walk-ons who have exceeded expectations in Westwood over the past few years, though – such as tight end Greg Dulcich, special teamer Ethan Fernea, linebacker Shea Pitts and kicker/punter Nicholas Barr-Mira – so Leigber certainly has room to grow within the program.

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