Four Schools Still After Holiday

SEP. 12 -- Four-star cornerback Dechaun Holiday is still looking at four schools, but UCLA looks to be in pole position...

San Marcos (Calif.) Mission Hills cornerback Dechaun Holiday hasn’t put much thought into the recruiting process as of late, but there is one factor in considering a college that he is very particular about.

The 6-foot-2, 218-pound four-star prospect wants to be recruited specifically as a cornerback. In recent months, that has been one factor — among others — which has set UCLA apart in his recruitment.

Certainly for the Bruins, no news is good news on the Holiday recruiting front.

“Nothing has really changed since the season has started,” said Holiday. “It’s UCLA, USC and then Oregon and Washington as well.”

Oregon and Washington have joined UCLA in recruiting Holiday as a corner, whereas USC has categorized him more generally as a defensive back.

“As far as I know, UCLA, and Oregon want me as a corner, but I haven’t really talked to many coaches since the season began. With school, football, football practice and family, I‘ve been pretty busy.

“USC… I haven’t really been in touch with Coach (Keith) Heyward lately either, but the last time we spoke we didn’t really get into the details of where they saw me fitting in.”

Although Holiday has the size of a safety, he sees himself fitting into a college defense as a cornerback for a few simple reasons.

“Playing corner just kind runs in the family,” said Holiday. “Once my cousin (Devin Holiday) played it, I started learning a lot from him. I also like the satisfaction of getting picks and reading routes. There’s just nothing like it.”

And the trend toward bigger cornerbacks in the NFL hasn’t gone unnoticed by Holiday either.

“That’s a positive and is a reason to stay at corner,” said Holiday. “I watch Richard Sherman, but my favorite player is Patrick Peterson.”

While Holiday is inspired by football on Sundays, Mission Hills practices on Saturdays.

Thus, Holiday has yet to take in any college football games in person this season. However, he has watched USC on television the past two weeks.

“The intensity of USC’s defense just has a whole different look to me,” said Holiday. “I feel like they’re playing with a lot more passion. They have a lot of young guys getting it done for them and that’s good to see.”

Holiday plays both ways for Mission Hills, catching three touchdown passes so far this season. Playing receiver and cornerback in high school, Holiday can appreciate the job USC freshman Adoree Jackson is doing for the Trojans on offense and defense.

“It’s a good thing to be able to help your team win on both sides of the ball,” said Holiday. “It’s not really a surprise with Adoree though. I knew he would be playing somewhere early - him and Juju Smith.”

Holiday has yet to catch a whole game from UCLA this season, but he continues to follow the Bruins closely.

“From what I have seen, the defense is playing well,” said Holiday. “I think the team is coming along. It’s a work in progress, but I like the way their defense is playing.”

Washington was one school Holiday went out of his way to mention during the summer. With Chris Petersen taking over the reigns as head coach, the Huskies continue to be a factor in Holiday’s recruitment.

“Coach (Jimmy) Lake and Coach Peterson just left a good impression,” said Holiday. “I’ve talked to both of them and they made me feel like they’re going to have a good program up there.”

Holiday has no official visit plans to speak of; leaving college football fans to assume the schools he has mentioned are those most likely to receive a visit. While he has not ruled out taking official visits during the season, it appears a majority of his trips will be pushed back to December and January.

“I have a bye week in like a month,” said Holiday. “It’s possible I might take a visit if any teams I’m looking at are playing at home that week.”

Holiday admits winning has its allure when considering a college, but at the same time, his visits won’t be determined by the AP or College Football Coaches Poll.

“I don’t want to jump on a bandwagon team, but I also wouldn’t mind coming into a team during their building stage,” said Holiday. “Really, I’m looking to see where I can come in and play right away if that’s an option.”

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