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USC football recruiting: Trojans lock up center Brett Neilon

Trojans lock up versatile four-star offensive lineman Brett Neilon.

Santa Margarita (Calif.) Catholic offensive lineman Brett Neilon signed his National Letter of Intent and sent it in to the USC coaching staff Wednesday morning, doing his part to give the Trojans one of the top offensive line classes in the country.

The athletic 6-foot-2, 275-pound four-star lineman is the No. 1 center in the West region and the No. 4 center prospect in the country. Neilon made the switch to center this season after playing guard previously at Santa Margarita. He did play some guard during the Polynesian Bowl in Hawaii after being the starting center for the West team in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl.

Neilon is the first scholarship Santa Margarita player to sign with USC since top 100 prospect Max Tuerk chose the Trojans in 2012. Tuerk was rated as a guard coming out of high school but ended up becoming the starting center during his time at USC before being drafted by the San Diego Chargers.

Upon committing to the Trojans in June, Neilon told Scout, "USC was just the best all around fit for me. They have everything I’m looking for." He ultimately was the vocal leader of the Trojans' class becoming the biggest USC recruiter on the board.

"We’re definitely building a family down there and something really special."

Neilon will benefit from an opportunity to get in the weight room while likely redshirting his freshman year. He enters the depth chart at the center position behind redshirt senior Nico Falah and redshirt sophomore Cole Smith.

Scout Evaluation:

Neilon is a very talented interior lineman who could line up at center or guard in college. He's very sound technique wise, plays with good pad level and is one of the strongest players in the region. He's a mauler as a run blocker and does a nice job getting to the second level and has the ability to handle just about any nose guard/defensive tackle without needing a double team. He also has the feet to develop in to a very good pass protector in college. He's a kid who loves the weight room and has the toughness to be a very good player in college. - Greg Biggins

Here are some Brett Neilon isolation highlights from a game against Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei where Oregon defensive tackle commit Austin Faoliu was often lined up across from him:

Also, check out our quick glance at the 2017 USC Trojans recruiting class to see the latest updates on who has signed.

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