Scout Ranking: #2 Safety
Safety prospect T.J. McDonald is one of the most impressive overall recruits in USC's 2009 class. One of the top safeties in high school football, McDonald has a great understanding of the game. He is a very mature kid with great leadership skills and is as impressive off the field as he is on. Look for the talented safety to make an early impact in his career at USC. McDonald will come in as a strong safety and the coaches would like to use him similar to the way Kevin Ellison was used last season.
T.J. is a very similar player to his father, Tim McDonald, who played at USC and was a six-time Pro Bowler in the NFL.
According to Carroll: "This kid is just a prototype looking safety. He looks just like the kids we've had the last few years. He's over 6-2 and 218 pounds already. He's a gifted player and student, a great leader and just everything you're looking for. His dad played here at USC, Tim McDonald, who played when I was coaching at the 49ers. They are the spitting image of each other. They are the same size and stature and playmaking ability and leadership qualities and all those things."
Reason for Choosing USC: "I just knew that if USC was to offer me that was where I was going. I knew from the beginning that was where I was going. I'm 100 percent USC. I have always wanted to be a Trojan my whole life. I grew up watching the Trojans so that has always been a dream of mine."
Future Impact: With the return of Taylor Mays, Will Harris and Josh Pinkard, T.J. McDonald may not see much action at safety in 2009, but look for him to make an impact in 2010. It's only a matter of time before he becomes a really special player at USC.
T.J. McDonald has a very bright future ahead of him at USC.
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