West Regional Recruiting Roundup

Jul. 6 -- All the news and notes from the West in Scout's weekly Regional Recruiting Roundup...

Thomas Graham - DB - Rancho Cucamonga (Calif.) Committed to USC

Although just a junior, Graham was the highest rated player to commit out West announcing for USC Wednesday night. Graham is a top 30 player nationally in the 2017 class and one of the elite underclassmen in the nation.

USC was the childhood dream school for Graham and once he received the offer at the Rising Stars Camp, there was little doubt he would be a Trojan. Arizona State and UCLA were also involved and Graham said he would have likely made an early commitment before landing the offer from the Trojans, saying he wanted to get his decision out of the way early to focus on his junior year without the distractions of recruiting.

Graham has good size,excellent speed and is a physical corner. He’s going to continue to grow and mature physically and that will only take his game to another level. He’s a smart player, always competes at a high level and is a solid student off the field as well.

Chuck Filiaga- OL - Vista Murrieta (Calif.)

With the recent release of the 2017 Scout 100, we’ll go with another underclassman here as our Prospect on the Rise. Two-way lineman Chuck Filiaga can play on either side of the line but we love his upside as an offensive tackle.

He worked out with the defensive lineman at The Opening Regional in L.A back in March and lit it up. He has a great frame, is a high level athlete and plays with a non-stop motor to him.

There is no doubt he could play and excel as a defensive lineman but with his long, rangy frame, we think he just has the look of a dominant left tackle in college. UCLA recently offered and before the summer is over, don’t be surprised if his offer sheet hits double digits.

Juliano Falaniko - LB - Pago Pago (AS) Leone

We’ll stay with the underclass theme this week and go with the one of the fastest rising defensive players out West.

We saw Falaniko at The Opening Regional Camp in Eugene in June and were very impressed. He has the kind of frame that could grow in to a defensive end or he could stay as a hybrid outside linebacker. He moves around well in space but has the look of a natural pass rusher who can get after the quarterback.

Offers have been piling up for Falaniko and the athlete landed his first one out of the SEC this week from Ole Miss. He also picked up two more Pac 12 offers from Utah and Washington and is now past the double digit offer mark.

Tayari Venable - ATH - Rancho Cucamonga (Calif.) - 2017

Like Graham, Venable also committed at the Ground Zero ceremony earlier in the week.

Venable is a versatile defensive back who can play safety or corner in college. He has good size and quickness, shows a lot of range and has excellent ball skills.

He plays more corner now but he has a solid frame and could grow in to a safety down the road. Regardless of where he ends up position wise, he’s a kid with a nice upside who could see the field sooner than later.

Washington State was his first BCS offer but we’re projecting Venabe to be a kid with multiple BCS offers by the time he’s senior. Venable said at his announcement his commitment was solid but as more schools come in to the picture, the Cougars will have a fight on their hand to hang on to him.

C.J. Pollard - DB - Gardena (Calif.) Serra

Pollard will commit next week at The Opening Finals in Beaverton, Oregon. He took unofficial visits to Arizona State and Utah and Michigan was also a factor here as well but it will be a huge shock if he ends up anywhere other than USC.

Pollard’s father Marvin played at USC and the safety grew up with the Trojans as his dream school. Once they offered earlier in the spring, the question with Pollard changed from where would he commit to when.

Pollard’s strength as a safety is his cover skills. He can cover as well as most cornerbacks and is a very aggressive player. He has long arms, runs well and has a high football IQ. He’s still thin for a safety and will need to put on some size and add strength but he has a very nice upside to him for sure.

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