El Cerrito High grad Adarius Pickett shines as UCLA safety


Adarius Pickett, an El Cerrito High graduate from Richmond, has become a “hit” as a UCLA safety.

Pickett, who recorded three tackles, one interception and a pass breakup that forced overtime in a loss to Texas A&M last week, is garnering a ton of attention since transitioning to the safety position. According to the Los Angeles Daily News, Pickett “has found a home as a hard-hitting safety with a knack for big plays.”

He even wears a dark visor in practice, just like Seattle Seahawks star safety Kam Chancellor.

“I love hitting people,” Pickett told the Daily News. “I’ve always been a physical presence on the field whether it be playing running back, offense, defense, special teams.”

Redshirt senior safety Randall Goforth called Pickett a playmaker who can also cover the pass game.

“Pickett grew up playing baseball as his father Antoine had a brief minor-league baseball career,” the Daily News pointed out. “On the baseball diamond, he developed the range he uses to cover the field and his ball-tracking ability.”

Despite his success, Pickett remains humble, determined and focused on the team more than himself. He told the publication Scout.com, which acknowledged his “standout” performance against Texas A&M, that he “did pretty well” but “could have done better” in the game.

“I could have made more plays and done more things, but going into the next game, I’ll do more,” he said.

Pickett, who played running back at El Cerrito High, rushing for 1,800 yards and 31 TDs as a senior, is set to graduate this year with a degree in political science and plans to attend graduate school.