Scout Ranking: #5 Defensive End
Arguably the top defensive player in the entire 2009 class, Devon Kennard is a complete defensive end with great burst off the ball, good technique and plays the run well. He showed off his various skills last summer at USC's Rising Stars Camp where he consistently beat Stan Hasiak and Xavier Su'a-Filo with his quickness during one-on-one drills.
As a junior, Kennard recorded 111 tackles and 24 sacks. He was sidelined for much of his senior season after tearing knee ligaments in the third game of the season. He is expected to be at full speed for fall camp.
According to Carroll: "The No. 1 rated defensive end in the country Devon Kennard is an extraordinary football player. You think of a defensive end you think of a guy just rushing the passer. He can cover, he can rush, he's a great edge rush guy. He can play one-on-one coverage on tight ends and shadow receivers when he has to. He's played on the offensive side of the ball. He's just a gifted player who has a tremendous upside and we think he's got a chance to help us right away and be a factor in our rush corps from the beginning. We're really excited about what he brings us."
Reason for Choosing USC: "It is just a good situation for me. I wanted to make the best decision all around. I will compete against the best of the best and this will help me be the best I can be. They put a lot of guys in the NFL and if that doesn't work out, I will have a good education to fall back on."
Future Impact: Kennard is one of the really special players in this class. He certainly looks like a future star and could have an impact as a freshman, but will have to compete with a handful of other young, talented defensive ends at USC.
Devon Kennard races past UCLA commit Stan Hasiak at the Rising Stars Camp.
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