Running back MVP gets offer

Lancaster (Calif.) junior running back Melquise Stovall is explosive in the open field, and showed it at the Los Angeles Regional Opening Sunday.

REDONDO, Calif. — Paraclete High School running back Melquise Stovall earned a scholarship offer from USC Saturday and backed up that honor with an Opening Regional MVP Sunday.

Stovall’s weekend was about as good as it gets for a Southern California high school football player.

“Coach Tui(asosopo) has been on me for a while, so when I went up there for the visit yesterday, I knew they liked me enough to offer me,” said Stovall. “I wasn’t sure if they would offer, but throughout the day watching practice I was getting little hints.

“Almost every coach came up to me and asked, ‘Hey, you talked to coach Sark yet?’ Then I kind of knew it was coming.

“Coach Tui walked me up to the offices after practice. We waited on coach Sark, and then he came in and actually started talking about how they were renovating their practice field. You could see it from his office.

“We were just talking and then he said, ‘I really wanted to do this in person. I’m offering you a scholarship to play at USC.’ That was exciting. It’s a big offer. I called my brother and my mother to tell them. They like USC, especially my brother, so it’s huge.”

Huge, but not quite enough to garner a commitment yet.

“It’s definitely going to be hard to choose with USC there, but I want to take my time and think things through,” said Stovall. “I am trying to graduate early, so I do want to get a decision over with as soon as possible. I want to get a few visits in before a decision, so as soon as I can do that, I’ll start scheduling trips so I can decide.”

Stovall liked what he saw from the Trojans offense Saturday, especially with Steve Sarkisian’s implementation of the uptempo offense combine with a pro-style scheme.

“It was definitely high energy at USC,” said Stovall. “I liked the fact that they were playing music and going hard. Everything was well put together and well organized. They had a great flow to practice.”

Besides the practice he saw Saturday, Stovall has several reasons to consider USC.

“The exposure that USC gives you is great,” said Stovall. “I mean, it’s USC. I also like the way they would use me as a player. Offensive and special teams as a kick returner. They even talked to me about playing defensive back.

“They really give their players the freedom to play anywhere. I spoke to Keith Heyward and he said he’d love to give me a look at defense.”

Stovall is excited about USC, but there are other schools he still wants to hear more from.

Oregon, LSU, Baylor, TCU… schools like that,” said Stovall. “I definitely feel like I fit in to what Oregon does offensively. I like those teams with high tempo that can spread it out and play me in the slot.

“I’ll definitely unofficially visit Oregon, and I also want to get tho Washington too. I’ll be up at Cal and San Diego State. I want to visit Miami too, but that might be an official.”

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