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Versatile Donavyn Pellot, Landon Bell say why they chose Pac-12

Silverado senior football player Donavyn Pellot said last week he wasn’t far away from making a decision on his college future.

He wasn’t kidding.

Pellot decided Monday night that he was going to UCLA, choosing the Bruins over fellow — for now — Pac-12 schools Arizona, Washington and Washington State.

He said inside linebackers coach Ken Norton Jr. did “a phenomenal job of recruiting me, as well as coach Chip Kelly.”

“They have been on me more than really any other school,” Pellot said.

He was the highest-rated player on 247Sports’ state rankings who hadn’t committed. The versatile Pellot can play a variety of positions and is listed as an athlete.

Bishop Gorman defensive end Jonah Leaea, at eighth, now is the highest-ranked player who hasn’t announced his intentions.

Pellot’s mom is from Southern California, and he has family there, which he said was a big factor in his decision. Not nearly as influential is that UCLA will move to the Big Ten in 2024, but Pellot still liked the idea of playing future games at Ohio State’s Horseshoe and Michigan’s Big House.

“Everybody knows Ohio State, Michigan and all those big-time schools and how much publicity … those teams get,” Pellot said.

Early commitment

Another local football player also committed to a Pac-12 school when Liberty’s versatile Landon Bell pledged to Washington’s 2024 class.

He is the only Nevada player on 247Sports’s 2024 state rankings to have committed, but Bell said doing so relieved the stress of delaying the decision.

Bell, listed as an athlete, also considered Michigan State, Colorado and Colorado State, among other schools. His Washington visit this past weekend sealed the deal.

“I was like 60 percent (sure), and after that visit, it kind of clicked, and I was like, ‘This is home,’” Bell said.

He said the Huskies are heavy with upper classmen, which should provide him with immediate playing time when he arrives.

“They said my chances of starting are very likely because … there will be a new receiving corps,” Bell said. “I would fit right into the offense because (of the scheme). It’s a high-passing offense.”

BYU, Arizona bound

Liberty senior forward Ali’a Matavao, who was named last season’s Gatorade Girls Basketball of the Year in Nevada, committed to Brigham Young in early August.

The only Nevada player on ESPN’s top 100 list, Centennial senior forward Montaya Dew, announced last December she is headed to Arizona. She is ranked ninth nationally by ESPN.

Contact reporter Mark Anderson at manderson@reviewjournal.com. Follow @markanderson65 on Twitter.

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