Pac-12 Recruiting Show: The Battle in L.A.

Dec. 11 -- Scout takes a weekly closer look at the major recruiting news and notes in the Pac-12 Conference...

Final Visit Weekend Before Dead Period

With no Pac-12 games this weekend, most of the conference schools will host official visitors, with the two Los Angeles schools, Arizona, California and Washington State having the largest list of recruits coming in.

In Los Angeles – Clay Helton will have his first big visit weekend as the permanent head coach of the Trojans and USC has a big contingent coming to Troy.  The headliner is five-star defensive end Oluwole Betiku from Gardena (Calif.) Serra, the program that keeps churning out prospects to the Trojans.  He'll be joined by his Serra teammate and USC commit C.J. Pollard.   Also visiting this weekend is Westlake Village (Calif.) Oaks Christian athlete Michael Pittman, who solidified his pledge to the Trojans with the permanent hiring of Helton and retention of Tee Martin and Marques Tuiasosopo.  And another handful of Trojan commits will also be visiting officially. 


In Westwood – the Bruins have eight official visitors coming in this weekend, three of them key uncommitted targets.  The big name visitors for the Bruins are Concord (Calif.) De La Salle teammates Boss Tagaloa, the West's top defensive tackle and Devin Asiasi, the West's top tight end.  They will be joined by another big Bruin target in McKeesport (Pa.) athlete Khaleke Hudson, who will make his first ever visit to the UCLA campus.  Five more visitors will be at UCLA this weekend, all commits, including Scout 100 defensive end Breland Brandt.


In Berkeley – the Bears will welcome in Scout 300 prospect Melquise Stovall from Lancaster (Calif.) Paraclete for his final visit before he announces his decision at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl.  The one-time USC commit will be joined by Cal's quarterback commit in this class, Thousand Oaks (Calif.) passer Max Gilliam.  A pair of commits from Texas will also be on visits to Cal, D'Eriq King and D'Vaughn Pennamon, both out of Manvel (Texas).


In Pullman – Coming off their best regular season in 12 years, the Cougars will have their largest visit weekend to date, with a handful of commits coming in to town.  Headlining the group is Mt. San Jacinto (Calif.) defensive end Phillip Napoleon.  A couple of Coug defensive commits will also be there to do some recruiting of Napoleon too in Downey (Calif.) cornerback Jalen Thompson and fellow JC prospect Chima Onyeukwu from Contra Costa (Calif.) College.


In Tucson – With Rich Rodriguez staying in Tucson after being pursued by a few schools, the Wildcats will bring a number of recruits in this weekend, key being the visit of their top commit, Michael Eletise, the West's top offensive guard from Honolulu (Hawaii) Kaiser.  Corona (Calif.) Centennial running back J.J. Taylor has been dazzling all season and he has the week off before the Huskies play De La Salle in the CIF State Open Division title so he'll visit his future school this weekend as well.  Utah commit Kahi Neves will be visiting Arizona this weekend too, the Wildcats still trying to flip him and Lorenzo Burns from Temecula (Calif.) Linfield is another uncommitted target visiting.


Who will be No. 1?

Stanford is currently in the No. 1 spot in the Scout Pac-12 Recruiting Team Rankings, fitting considering the Cardinal just won their third Pac-12 title in the last four years.

1. Stanford (9)

2. Oregon (12)

3. UCLA (15)

4. USC (21)

5. Arizona State (22)

6. Washington (37)


Other Visits of Note in the Pac-12

Scout’s No. 2 rated running back Kareem Walker, a 6-foot-0, 210-pound five-star from Wayne (N.J.) De Paul Catholic has offers from coast-to-coast and the former Ohio State commit now has a top five of Florida State, Auburn, Alabama, Michigan and Arizona State.  He'll be visiting Arizona State officially this weekend. 

One of the top JC prospects in the country, Snow (Utah) College defensive tackle Handsome Tanielu, will be visiting Utah officially. 

Washington will host three commits from in-state this weekend, led by four-star cornerback Isaiah Gilchrist from Bellevue (Wash.).  Earlier in the week, the top linebacker nationally, Torrance (Calif.) North five-star Mique Juarez took an official.

Oregon will welcome Ventura (Calif.) College offensive lineman Tyson Rising on campus for an official and Lamar Jackson, the West's top safety out of Elk Grove (Calif.) Franklin, will be taking an unofficial visit.

Pac-12 Recruiting News and Notes

-Sacramento (Calif.) Burbank 2017 four-star defensive end D.J. Johnson picked up three Pac-12 offers this week, from Oregon State, USC and Utah

-In the week that their star running back is in New York City for the Heisman Trophy ceremonies, Stanford added to their backfield for the future with a commitment from McAllen (Texas) Memorial four-star running back Trevor Speights.

-Washington State landed up a pair of defensive commits in CC of San Francisco (Calif.) defensive back Robert Taylor and Taylorsville (Utah) defensive end Lyric Bartley.

-USC offered San Marcos (Calif.) Mission Hills defensive back Troy Warner the same week that BYU head coach Bronco Mendenhall left for the Virginia job.  Warner is a BYU commit and his older brother, Fred, plays for the Cougars.

National Recruiting Analyst Greg Biggins contributed to this notebook

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