For the second year in a row, the USC Trojans have gone across the country and dipped into the fertile recruiting grounds of Georgia to snatch one of the big bodies. Lawrenceville (Ga.) Archer offensive lineman E.J. Price announced he would be signing with USC during a locally televised signing day ceremony, choosing the Trojans over Auburn and the home state Georgia Bulldogs.
"I have come to the decision that for the next four years of my life, I will be at the University of Southern California," Price said as he grabbed a Trojans' hat off the table.
The No. 1 offensive tackle in the state of Georgia and No. 99 overall prospect in the Scout 300 originally committed to the Bulldogs last spring, but backed off that decision in the summer so that he could fully go through the entire recruiting process. The new Georgia staff under Kirby Smart closed strong with Price, making a great impression with him on his final official visit last weekend. But it wasn't enough to get Price to stay in state.
USC offensive coordinator Tee Martin and administrative assistant Gavin Morris led the change to steal Price away from the Bulldogs on signing day. Morris, who was forced into a full time recruiting role, helped play a key role in viisting Price in-home when USC was under staffed in December.
Instead, Price will join the Imatorbhebhe brothers and five-star offensive tackle Chuma Edoga as Georgia natives on the USC roster. Edoga hosted Price on his official visit in mid-December and showed him how he has adjusted to the left coast.
“It’s gone well for him,” Price said at the time. “He’s adjusted pretty good to being all the way out there. He likes it. It’s definitely different. It’s kind of far from home. Very far from home, actually. But he enjoys it.”
The distance proved to be an overcomable obstacle for Price. The 6-foot-6, 324-pound tackle will come to campus with an opportunity to learn behind Edoga and redshirt junior Zach Banner.
Price grew up playing quarterback, so he is athletic and very light on his feet at offensive tackle. His frame is exactly what you look for in an offensive tackle. What stands out a lot about his Price is his coordination and ability to move in space. On the line of scrimmage, he is known for his strong punch knocking defenders off the ball. His best football is still ahead of him. He has so many traits to like, but still so much room to grow.
Here are E.J. Price's highlights titled "Welcome to IHOP - The Pancake Tape" full of him blowing up high school defensive linemen.
Also, check out our quick glance at the 2016 USC Trojans recruiting class to see the latest updates on who has signed.