Reardon Has Raised the Bar

Chase the big dogs, and you will find tough competition. Stanford took the lead earlier this spring in the pursuit of 6'6" Orange (Calif.) Lutheran High School athlete Michael Reardon. Since then, USC and Notre Dame offers have reshaped his recruiting landscape. He tells that he is down to four schools and talks about who leads, if he will take visits, and when he could commit.

It's down to four schools for Orange (Calif.) Lutheran defensive end Michael Reardon (6-6, 255).

"Basically I've narrowed it down to USC, Notre Dame, Stanford and Nebraska," he declares.  "I'd have to say SC is out in front."

The Trojans took the lead over the weekend following Reardon's performance at their lineman camp.  When the camp was over, USC offered Reardon a scholarship.

"I kind of feel like recruiting is almost complete," Reardon shares.  "I always wanted an offer from USC and from Notre Dame, and I got what I wanted to get.  Now, it's just a matter of making the decision."

Reardon says despite an offer from his favorites, and knowing his four schools, he does not plan to make a decision just yet.

"I don't really have an idea when I'm going to commit," he maintains.  "It could go either way - I'd wait or I'd commit.  It's tough to say because I really like USC, but I'm not saying I'm going to commit to them.  I could decide at any point.  I might take my official trips or I might decide."

Prior to the USC offer, Notre Dame extended Reardon an offer, and the Irish are just behind USC.  Stanford is also still in the mix, and the offer from the Cardinal staff is one that Reardon is keeping a close eye on.

"Notre Dame offered me as a defensive tackle, though I prefer defensive end.  Stanford has great academics and is a school that I have always liked.  I've gotten 20 offers, but I know it will come to those four schools," the SoCal recruit describes.

USC offered Reardon as an athlete, while the Cardinal and Huskers have offered him strictly as a defensive end.

Aaron Corp, Reardon's teammate at Orange Lutheran, committed earlier this spring to USC, but that too does not guarantee that Reardon will pledge to the Trojans.

"Me and Aaron are good friends, but just because he went there doesn't mean I'll go there," Reardon cautions.

Early on, Stanford was the leader for the 6-6 athlete, but with the offer from the Trojans, his Pac-10 loyalties are lying closer to home.

"Really, both schools are great opportunities for me," Reardon relates.  "I'm just feeling like USC is a really good one right now.  I want to take a trip to Stanford still."

This past weekend, Reardon clocked a 4.8 forty and jumped 35 inches in the vertical.

"I had a good day there.  USC didn't think I was quick enough to play defensive end, but I think I changed their mind," he offers.

With so many suitors, Reardon has reason to grow tired with the recruiting process, but he says that is not the case.

"I'm enjoying it," he admits.  "Everyone is telling you how good you are.  How could you not enjoy it?".

Last season, Michael Reardon had over 80 tackles and eight sacks despite suffering a leg injury in the final week of the season.  The Orange County recruit holds a four-star rating and is ranked the #12 defensive end in the nation by

Academically, he is in fine shape, holding a 4.0 GPA and scoring a 1590 on the SAT.

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