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
“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
“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
“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
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
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
Holiday sees a different USC
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