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Right after losing a punter, the Bruins have added a new one.

Class of 2022 punter Chase Barry committed to UCLA football on Saturday, as the JSerra (CA) product accepted a preferred walk-on spot to join the Bruins for next season. The team's starting punter for the last two years, Luke Akers, entered the transfer portal on Nov. 29, leaving them without a punter on scholarship or on the roster for the upcoming bowl game and next season.

That's where Barry came in, cashing in the spot the UCLA staff offered him on Nov. 25. Barry, who said he is going to be the first JSerra player ever to suit up in blue and gold on the gridiron, sat down with All Bruins to talk about his decision to come to Westwood.

"I chose UCLA as I want to be part of the Bruin family where I can receive an excellent education from the No. 1 public university in the country and, more importantly, be a member of the most illustrious family in the history of sports," Barry said.

Washington State, Oregon State, Arizona, Washington, Notre Dame and Columbia were vying for Barry's services as well. The only full rides Barry was offered were from the service academies, and while he said he loved and respected Army, Navy and Air Force, he did not see that as the right future for him.

Instead, Barry decided to commit to the Bruins, who he visited for their Oct. 2 game against Arizona State and again for a game against Cal on Nov. 27. Barry said he intends to enroll in UCLA's film school and focus his studies on cinematography and video editing.

Barry is a five-star punter according to both Chris Sailer Kicking and Kohl's Professional Camps, the authorities on special teams recruits. In addition to kicking at the top invitational camps run by former UCLA All-Americans Sailer and Aaron Perez, Barry also used to be a part of West Coast Kicking alongside current UCLA kickoff specialist RJ Lopez.

The 6-foot-5, 215-pound recruit spoke highly of special teams coordinator Derek Sage and special teams analyst Will Rodriguez, both as football minds and people off the field.

"I like that they're very simple in their punt scheme, it's very easy to pick up," Barry said. "They're very confident in what they do. ... I just really like a coaching staff that's positive about you and have good hopes for you."

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The highly-rated film school and coaching staff were only part of the equation, though.

Barry said his decision became much more clear when he saw Akers announce his intensions to transfer away from UCLA, opening up a chance for him to get starting reps right off the bat.

"Being able to get the playing time on the field is really one of the biggest things, especially when your goal at the end of the day is to – and I know it's a stretch – make the NFL," Barry said. "I think exposure to the game and just being out there, getting that starting job, is a huge thing. I don't necessarily want to be stuck behind a 32-year-old Australian because 18 versus a grown man, it's a little difficult."

The offer Barry accepted is locked in as a preferred walk-on spot for the first year, but with Akers gone, it opens the door for him to possibly secure a scholarship for the 2023 season and beyond.

In his senior season at JSerra, Barry attempted 47 punts for an average distance of 41.2 yards, a long of 51 and 18 inside the 20. For his career, Barry is averaging 39.0 yards per punt on 106 punts with a long of 63 and 31 inside the 20. Barry had two 50-plus-yard punts downed at the 1-yard line on Sept. 24 against Newport Harbor, and his coach Scott McKnight raved about his performance postgame.

Barry also plays volleyball at JSerra and just so happens to be neighbors with UCLA men's volleyball coach John Speraw. Barry said he hasn't gotten an offer from Speraw to play two sports, but that he would happily welcome the opportunity should it pop up.

"That'd be amazing, if I could play volleyball as well, it's a very passionate sport of mine," Barry said. "I haven't really talked to (Speraw) about me playing, but he knows I committed there for football."

Barry is one of two preferred walk-ons who are committed to UCLA in the 2022 recruiting cycle, with quarterback JP Zamora being the other. The Bruins' 12-man class of scholarship players ranks No. 3 in the Pac-12 and No. 38 in the country, according to 247Sports.

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