Before five-star 2017 signee Stephen Carr will step on campus at USC in May, he already has an adjustment to make.
Earlier in the year, running backs coach Tommy Robinson left USC for LSU. Replacing him Deland McCullough, who comes to USC from Indiana.
“I’m getting to know the new running backs coach,” said Carr. “I was at practice (Saturday) and met him.
“We were vibing it out on the sidelines. He was introducing me to the players, but he’s still getting to know those guys too. With me and Coach McCullough, I feel like we share the same mentality.
“I feel like when I get there, the playbook is going to open up so much. We’re going to go get it.”
While Carr had a good relationship with Robinson, the Fontana Summit star tailback originally committed to the Trojans when Johnny Nansen was coaching running backs for USC.
Thus, Carr has actually had communication with three running back coaches at USC since he first committed to
“College football is a business,” said Carr. “At the end of the day, you have to realize there will be changes and coaches will come and go.
“I wish Coach Robinson nothing but the best. He’s still one of my favorite running backs coaches.”
McCullough comes to USC after developing Tevin Coleman and Jordan Howard in consecutive years for the NFL. In 2015, McCullough had two 1,000-yard rushers at Indiana.
“I’m not really familiar with what he did at Indiana, but he told me that if he could have recruited me there, he would have,” laughed Carr. “I’m pretty excited about what he can produce.
“Like I said from day one, I want a coach that I can relate to and who is very player friendly. Someone who understands the grimy parts of recruiting and the grimy parts of life. I feel like he's a younger coach that can relate to that.”
Watching USC practice for the first time this spring, Carr is coming to terms with the reality of making an impact as a true freshman.
“There will be a lot to adjust to,” said Carr. “The speed transitioning from high school to college will be an adjustment.
“I’ve got a lot of friends and homies that I’ve grown with through the recruiting process, so it will be like playing with the gang again. That will help. It’s just football.
“I feel like the running backs they have are pretty much the same size as me. The first thing I have to do is get down the plays, but the plays seem pretty simple. We ran a similar offense at Summit.”
Carr is currently 6-foot, 210-pounds and runs in the low 4.5’s in the 40-yard dash.
“I’ve been working out the whole offseason, and if I train for it, I think I have a 4.4 in me,” said Carr. “I feel pretty good at 210, but we’ll see when I get on campus in May.”
While USC closed with one of the best cases nationally for 2017, Carr had been a part of the class for the better part of two years prior to signing day.
“It’s a blessing to be a part of this class,” said Carr. “Really, the 2016 and 2017 class are so good, I feel like they complement each other.
“I recruited pretty heavily on the low. I was happy that we landed everybody we did. Greg (Johnson) Jody Lewis… I’m glad we got Bubba (Bolden) back. Jack Sears enrolling early will be a blessing.
“The offensive line is great, the defensive line will be amazing. Levi Jones… man, that 2017 class is everywhere with talent.”