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Prized UCLA freshman Mique Juarez misses second consecutive practice

Prized UCLA freshman Mique Juarez misses second consecutive practice
Mique Juarez announces his commitment to UCLA during national signing day on Feb. 3. (Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

Linebacker Mique Juarez, UCLA's most highly touted freshman, missed a second consecutive day of practice Saturday. Bruins Coach Jim Mora became a bit repetitive when asked about Juarez's absenteeism.

"He's got an excused absence from us," Mora said.

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Was there any chance Juarez had left the team?

"He's got an excused absence from us," Mora said.

Did Mora have an expectation for when Juarez might return?

"He's got an excused absence from us," Mora said.

Juarez was widely considered the top player at his position coming out of North Torrance High. He enrolled at UCLA early so that he could participate in spring practice and was competing for immediate playing time with far more experienced teammates.

Juarez had composed a series of cryptic tweets in recent days, including: "There's things I can control & and it's definitely my time to take control of things I've wanted to stop" and "Can't control my life. Smh."

UCLA returns three starting linebackers from last season with Jayon Brown, Kenny Young and Deon Hollins. The team has such good depth at the position that it was able to move Hollins to the defensive line.

The Bruins were scheduled to hold a second practice Saturday afternoon on campus before departing for the San Bernardino portion of their training camp, which starts Monday.

Twitter: @latbbolch

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