LOS ANGELES – UCLA director of track and field Mike Maynard announced the addition of four more prep standouts to the already highly talented recruiting class. The Bruins inked Curtis Godin, Misana Viltz, Leon Powell and Joe Herrera.
"Coach Johnson and Coach Hayes have done an exceptional job of bolstering a great group of male sprinters in this year's recruiting class,” Maynard said. “With this group, and the great group on the team, we are poised to return to the sprint powerhouse that we have been in the past."
Godin attends Mater Dei in Santa Ana, Calif., and is currently the top 100m and 200m runner in the state of California and has the third best times in the country in both events. Godin is coming off an impressive weekend where he won the 100m (10.36) and placed second in the 200m (21.03) with two personal bests at the Arcadia Invitational. Godin has run 10.50 or better in the 100m five times this season and has yet to lose in the event. Godin is relatively new to the sport of track as he played baseball until his junior season.
“We are very excited about Curtis,” Maynard said. “He is relatively a beginner in this sport, yet he has burst on to the sprints scene nationally. It’s extremely rare, and indicative of a great talent, for an athlete to improve this dramatically in one year. Until recently he was a baseball player, as this is only his second season running track.”
Powell attends Kennedale High School in Kennedale, Texas. He has not lost a race this season and has posted personal best times of 10.33 in the 100m and 20.90 in the 200m. He has run 10.60 or better in four races this outdoor season and has run 21.60 or faster in four races. Powell posted the third best prep 60m indoor time in Texas with a 6.92.
“Leon is currently the number three sprinter in America, and ranked number two in Texas,” Maynard explained. “His character and discipline will allow him to develop his great natural speed. He will have an impact in his first year.”
Viltz attends Millikan High School in Long Beach, Calif. Viltz is one of the top prep hurdlers in the country as he boasts a personal best 13.93 in the 110m hurdles which is the second fastest time in the country this season. Viltz won the California Indoor State Championships with a time of 7.36 in the 55m hurdles. He places second at the CIF State Championships last season in the 110m hurdles with a 14.08. He holds a personal best of 38.31 in the 300m hurdles.
“Misana is currently the number two hurdler in the country, after a big win at Arcadia this past weekend,” Maynard added. “We believe he has a tremendous upside in both hurdle races at this level.”
Herrera attends Tulare Western High School in Tulare, Calif. Herrera has the third fastest 400m time in the state of California with a time of 47.67. He has also run a 21.88 in the 200m. Herrera placed eighth at the CIF State Championships last season with a 47.99 in the 400m. He won the 600 yards at the California Indoor State Championships this season with a time of 74.08.
“Joe has been on our radar since the day Coach Johnson arrived here at UCLA,” said Maynard. “Joe's strength endurance and size are very impressive and perfect for the 200/400m. His physicality and drive will make him a 400m force at the top NCAA level.”