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UNLV football recruiting: Rebels land verbal from LB Nela Otukolo

The Rebels landed local linebacker prospect Nela Otukolo.

Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

UNLV head coach Tony Sanchez is following up on his promise to recruit the state of Nevada, specifically Las Vegas. The latest prospect to commit to the Rebels is a former player that Sanchez coached at Bishop Gorman. Three-star linebacker Nela Otukolo elected to stay close to home and play for his former coach.

The 5-foot-11, 240 prospect had offers from Wyoming, Fresno State, Hawaii, Kent State and other programs. Otukolo was suppose to visit Boise State and even had an offer for the Broncos, but he opted to play for his former coach. He has now chosen to shutdown his recruitment after pledging to play for UNLV.

"It's time we change this program around and give Vegas something to cheer for," Otukolo told Rivals. He might not be the last Bishop Gorman player to stay in town and go to UNLV. Otukolo added, "I'm the first. There will be a lot more coming."

If Sanchez can land the top talent at his former school then look for UNLV to no longer be at the bottom of the Mountain West. There are at least 10 players who are going to play college football at the FBS level, and possibly as many as 13.

It is surprising that Otukolo was not getting offers from more prestigious schools, he was the defensive player of the year in Nevada and on the best team in the country. He averaged 8.1 tackles per game, which came out to 121 total, had 2.5 sacks and forced four fumbles.

Check out Otukolo's highlights from Hudl: