Justin King Recruiting Update

Justin King, out of Monroeville, Pennsylvania is quite possibly the top cornerback prospect in the nation for the class of 2005. Garnering recruiting attention from every powerhouse out there, the Gateway High School star has begun to make some summer plans, including one trip out west that Trojan fans are sure to be interested in.

King (5-11.5, 180 lbs) is a tremendous athlete who stars on both sides of the ball for his Gateway team. From his cornerback spot he blanketed receivers all year long in 2003, preventing most teams from ever passing in his direction. Despite that, he still amassed 30 tackles and 3 interceptions. He was equally as dominant on the offensive side of the ball, rushing for 1,763 yards and 31 touchdowns at tailback, and he also caught 8 passes for 160 yards and 3 more scores as a receiver.

He wowed onlookers last spring when he put on an absolute exhibition at the Penn State Nike Camp where he showcased the skills that have him tabbed as the odds on favorite to be rated as the #1 cornerback prospect in this year's class. At the event, he ran a reported 4.29 forty, a 3.72 shuttle, and he also jumped 37.1 in the vertical. Also a standout in track, he ran a 10.42 100m in a recent meet.

Not surprisingly, King will have his pick of every top college program out there when signing day rolls around, and at the moment there are five schools that stand out, "Right now I like Michigan, Penn State, USC, Florida, and Texas probably," he said. "Nobody leads. I'm looking at the playing opportunity, the position coach, and academic support." King also stated that distance from home will not factor into his decision, "Not at all," he said.

So how did this prized Pennsylvania blue chipper gain interest in the Trojans? "We just sent them (USC) a tape and they offered me," he said. "They're the national champions and I just like USC period. I'm coming out this summer for the camp. I've basically talked to all of the coaches and Coach Carroll is coming in Friday. I've talked to him on the phone before. He asked me how interested I am and told me what they have to offer. I know that he's a great college coach, he coached in the NFL, and his teams win."

Although King does excel on both sides of the ball, most colleges, including USC, are recruiting King on the defensive side of the ball where he actually prefers to play, "They're recruiting me at corner," King said of the Trojans. "There's a great opportunity there because they didn't get one (a cornerback) last year or the year before, and the two seniors for this year are graduating."

King is also set to camp at Michigan this summer and he plans on making his decision sometime in the fall, "probably in the middle of the season," he said.

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