Bakersfield (Calif.) Liberty long snapper Cole Mazza (6-1 ¼, 235) knows that part of the job with being a specialist, particularly a snapper, is to be anonymous.
But Mazza is thankful that colleges are more and more, turning to snappers as offer guys.
One of the first snappers to be an early offer prospect, in fact, one of the first snappers to sign a letter-of-intent, was Christian Yount in the 2006 class.
Yount is one of the players that Mazza has looked up to in his career, and Yount’s alma mater, UCLA, was the first school to offer Mazza, doing so on Monday.
“It was amazing,” said Mazza. “It really was a surprise. I was kind of expecting it because the coaches told me to come down and they wanted to meet with me, but it was still a surprise.”
Mazza took an unofficial visit to UCLA on Monday, and met with head coach Jim Mora as well as special teams coach Jeff Ulbrich.
“Coach Mora said they wanted me to get out there, so I went down there and went into his office and met him for the first time,” said Mazza. “He told me that he was offering me a scholarship to UCLA. That was a pretty amazing experience.”
Mazza also got to chat with Ulbrich, who made a nice career in the NFL as a special teamer.
“Coach Ulbrich is a really nice guy and really knows how to relate,” said Mazza. “Having him play in the NFL and on special teams is a good resource.”
Mazza said that other schools, like Arizona State, Alabama, Texas and Washington State are all interested in him as well.
“I’m going to Alabama and to Texas for their special teams camps, and those are the ones I know of right now,” said Mazza.
Mazza said he doesn’t want to drag out his recruitment.
“I would like to take some visits, but I’d also like to decide before my senior year,” said Mazza.
Mazza has been training with long snapping guru Chris Rubio of Rubio Long Snapping.
“I started snapping in fifth grade but it wasn’t until last January that I started working with Coach Rubio and he’s really helped me,” said Mazza.
Rubio Long Snapping ranks Mazza #1 in the class of 2013.
“If I could rank a long snapper higher than a five-star, Mazza might get it,” said Rubio. “The kid snaps the ball with so much force, power and accuracy it is almost shocking. I personally, actually timed him at .55 and .58 from 15 yards which is amazing. When he snaps, it looks like he is hurting the target, yet it is very easy to catch due to tight spiral and ball placement. His drive to remain number one is uncanny and he is very blue collar in his work ethic.”
Mazza doesn’t limit his contributions to Liberty to just snapper, but knows that’s where his future is.”
“I started at center this year, but I’ll just be a long snapper in college,” said Mazza.