Now onto the rest of the prospects USC has offered and those the Trojans are showing interest in:
Jesse Scroggins from Lakewood High has become the quarterback the Trojans covet the most from the 2010 class and earned a scholarship after his performance at the Rising Stars Camp. But a commitment from Scroggins isn't a given, far from it actually. He has serious interest in Florida and Tennessee after unofficial visits to those schools two weeks ago. Don't be surprised if Lane Kiffin the Vols ends up signing Scroggins.
If Scroggins does choose another school over USC, the Trojans would then offer either Tyler Bray from Kingburg High near Fresno, or Chase Rettig from San Clemente High. Bray has offers from Fresno State and San Diego State and we believe would sign with the Trojans if offered. We also believe Rettig, who has an offer from Boston College, would sign with USC if offered and we will have stories on both prospects later this week.
USC has offered three more running backs than those previously mentioned and are showing interest on a couple more, but the chances of the Trojans landing another running back in this class are low, unless Melvin Davis from Narbonne gets a late offer. Lache Seastrunk from Temple High in Temple, Tex., Malcolm Jones, USC DB Marshall Jones's brother, from Oaks Christian in Westlake Village and Jakhari Gore from Columbus High in Miami all have offers, and another running back the Trojans have interest in is Dontae Williams from Aldine High in Houston. Williams is a powerful back with tremendous speed. We were told by a great source, if USC offers Melvin Davis, who is a powerful touchdown maker like Lendale White was for USC, there would be a great chance he would switch his commitment from Washington to the Trojans. You heard it here first.
Seastrunk was supposed to compete at the Rising Stars Camp last week, but didn't show. Not a good sign for the Trojans. We'll have a clearer idea of where Seastrunk is at with his interest in USC if he officially visits in the fall. And it's highly unlikely Jones will choose SC with Marc Tyler being a Trojan. Stanford is his likely destination. Gore will end up Cane or a Gator in our opinion.
It appears USC's top four wide receiver prospects are Robert Woods from Serra High in Gardena, Calif., DeMarco Cobbs from Central High in Tulsa, Okla., Kenny Stills from La Costa Canyon in San Diego and Kyle Prater from Proviso West High in Hillside, Ill. Those four have offers from USC and reportedly Chris Dunkley from Pahokee, Fla. has an offer, but he is unlikely to end up a Trojan and is showing very little interest at this point. Kenneth Scott from Colony High in Ontario, Calif., is another wide receiver the Trojans have interest in. Scott looked impressive at USC's Rising Stars Camp on June 24th and 25th, using his big frame to shield smaller defensive backs during the one-on-one drills.
We believe Cobbs has high interest in USC and could possibly be the closest to committing at this point. He looked good at the Rising Stars Camp, he's said USC is his top school and he'll return to USC for an official visit in the fall. Anytime a top prospect from another state verbally commits to USC, the pressure they get to stay in state is enormous. So don't expect Cobbs to announce anytime soon, if USC is the school he wants to sign with. We also shouldn't overlook the close relationship USC commit Xavier Grimble and Cobbs have.
While distance usually plays a factor in trying to lure an out of state player to the West Coast, Cobbs has stated that distance won't play a factor in his decision because he has family in the L.A. area.
Woods and Stills have talked about their serious interest in USC and we believe it will end up a USC vs. UCLA battle for Woods, and a USC vs. Oklahoma battle for Stills. There's still a long ways to go in this process and the USC coaching staff has never worked any harder with their recruiting efforts than they are this year. I'd give the nod to USC with Woods right now. Stills was scheduled to attend the Rising Stars Camp, but summer school threw a wrench in those plans. Woods was also scheduled to compete, but he decided against that, but he did show up on Day 2, as did Narbonne DB Sean Parker with Byron Moore Sr.
Scott doesn't have an offer from the Trojans, but he could become a legitimate option if USC doesn't get three of the wide receivers who already have offers.
Six offensive linemen have offers from USC and only two of them are from California, and Brice Schwab is already committed to the Trojans. Dakota Smith from Westchester High also has an offer, but should be considered an offensive line prospect, because he's far too heavy be an effective defensive lineman right now, in my opinion. The other offensive linemen with offers that haven't committed to a school are Giovanni Di Poalo from St. Bonaventure in Ventura, Chaz Green from Tampa Catholic, Sentreal Henderson from Cretin Derham Hall in St. Paul, Jake Matthews from Elk High in Missouri City, Tex., and T.J. Leifheit from Hoggard High in Wilmington, N.C. Of that group, only Di Poalo is likely to commit, but Lefheit had some praise for USC in a recent article written by Superpep Publisher Allen Wallace.
Leifheit has already visited all seven of his favorite schools, including USC, where he plans to go again in late July with his mom.
"I have some family in California, so I've been there a lot," he said. "I love southern California. The weather is always great and it's only a few minutes away from the beach, kind of like I am here (in Wilmington). USC just has great football tradition and they win a lot. There isn't much not to like."
Leifheit admits he's also very impressed with the Trojans o-line as well. "Since (offensive line) coach Pat Ruel has been at USC he says that every single scholarship offensive lineman they've had has gone on to the NFL."
So, if USC offensive line coach Pat Ruel wants to bring in five offensive linemen from the 2010 class, as we believe he does, he will eventually need to offer more prospects. A few offensive linemen who could end up with offers are Michael Criste from Mission Viejo, Nick Rowland from Centennial High in Peoria, Ariz., Jay Barlow from San Diego Cathedral Catholic, Chris Ward from Mater Dei in Santa Ana and Erik Kohler from Oaks Christian in Westlake Village. Other than that, we aren't aware of other OL prospects the Trojans have any interest in.
In my opinion, USC has a great shot at signing Criste should the Trojans offer and he told us after the USC linemen camp that he will likely get an offer in September. Perhaps after the first bye week when the USC coaches can see him play a game? Rowland obviously wants an offer from USC because he really worked his butt off at the Rising Stars Camp and I believe he seriously increased his chances of getting that offer. But he lives in Arizona State's backyard and both his parents are ASU alums. In my opinion, it going to be tough to get him to come play for the Trojans, but USC signed Brice Butler and both of his parents are Florida State alums. So, never count out the Trojans. Barlow is an athletic lineman that did well at the USC Linemen Camp and he does have serious interest in USC, so it will be interesting to see if he gets an offer in the future. We heard Criste, Barlow and Di Poalo were the three offensive linemen from the camp USC liked the most.
Chris Ward lists USC as a school he has interest in, but we haven't talked to him since he attended USC's Junior Day back in April. He did not attend a camp at USC in June, so the earliest he will get an offer, if he does, will be in the fall. Kohler hasn't expressed having any interest in USC and list California and UCLA as his top schools. I'm picking UCLA as the school Kohler signs with.
That's our list of the offensive prospects we believe are worth mentioning, and look for our bonus Insider Report later tomorrow for a defensive recruiting recap.
- Kevin Carden contributed to The Insider Report
Lakewood QB Jesse Scroggins got an offer from USC after the Rising Stars Camp.