Gerard Martinez

2018 LB Jack Lamb has flipped his childhood interest

After growing up more of a UCLA fan, 2018 linebacker Jack Lamb had an eye-opening experience attending a USC practice and now considers the Trojans his favorite.

At 6-foot-4 and 220 pounds, Jack Lamb looks the part of a Division I linebacker.

But it is only recently that the 2018 Temecula (Calif.) Great Oak prospect has seen his stock start to rise with his first Football Bowl Subdivision offer from California. 

Lamb has recently been in communication with Missouri and Washington State while taking a recent unofficial visit to USC. Lamb toured the facilities, seeing the Trojans’ locker room and weight room and got to check out a practice. Though it was just a light, hour-long practice leading up to USC’s appearance in the Rose Bowl, the experience was an eye opener for Lamb. 

“That was the first time I had seen a college practice,” Lamb said. “There was a lot of talent. When you see them practice, you want to compare yourself to them, see if you can work with them. I think that would be a great fit for me. Obviously, I would love to put pads on, go up there and try for myself.”

Lamb also talked with USC head coach Clay Helton on the visit.

“Just a super nice guy. You can tell he’s really passionate about his coaching job. [He] actually wanted to come up to me and shake my hand. That’s something that I look for in a coach — approachability, just all around appreciating the game, appreciating his players. 

Lamb sees himself fitting in the USC defense at inside linebacker where he’s played from Pop Warner up through the high school ranks at Great Oak, but he doesn’t think a move to the outside linebacker spot would be an issue for him, if that’s where the coaching staff felt he best fit.

During the offseason, Lamb is training and playing with Ground Zero’s seven-on-seven team where he hopes he can showcase his mobility.

“Being a linebacker you don’t get to do a lot of that one-on-one coverage with a slot receiver [during the regular season]. If you do go one-on-one, it’s with the running back in the backfield. I think that’s great for footwork, working on your hands, getting your hands on people, being able to run with people. 

“It’s obviously great work that I’m getting here. That’s also good if there’s coaches watching and they can see that I can do that as well, maybe they can put me in coverage as well as playing inside linebacker.”

A strong offseason could see Lamb’s recruiting prospects blossom. His three offers could quickly turn into 13 or 23 if he is capable of playing well in space. Though he grew up more of a UCLA fan, went to games at the Rose Bowl and has a sister that attends UCLA, Lamb said his interests have flipped. More than any other, he’s hoping for an offer from USC.

“It’s a super high interest level for me. USC is probably at the top of my list right now. I love the campus. It’s close to home for me. It’s obviously a great team, putting the most players to the NFL of all the schools in the country and that’s super important to me.”

Ideally, Lamb would like to make a commitment before his senior season begins, but that will depend on his offer sheet and his comfortability with the programs that are recruiting him.

Recruiting analyst Gerard Martinez contributed to this story.

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