Fili Moala trip update

Defensive tackle Fili Moala from Western HS was the first player in this recruiting class to give a verbal commitment to the Trojans. Fili missed the majority of his senior season with a foot injury and his official visit this weekend got him pumped up to start his USC career.

"The trip was great.  On Friday we came up and got to know everybody just hanging out at the hotel and then we went for appetizers at the Sky Box in Staples Center and dinner at the Universal City Walk.  We ate a lot, talked football, talked with the coaches, it was fun and then after that we went out later.

We woke up around 9am on Saturday and went to breakfast at Town and Gown on campus.  That's when we really started to have a chance to hang out with each other and just kind of bond and it was a really tight group.  We had Chauncey, Jody Adewale, Steve Smith, Maurice, Damon, Devin Adair, Ryan Kalil, Sam Baker.  We were going around and talking about the reasons why we all chose SC and it was basically the same for everybody....because USC is on the rise and we wanted to be part of it. 

The entire day on Saturday was basically spent seeing the school, the career center, the requirements.  I learned a lot about the lifting and training programs they have and it was really impressive.  About 4:00 we went back to the hotel and rested for a little bit until the bus came to get us around 6:00 and we went to the Coliseum.  It was great, we went down to the locker room and it felt like a game with the jerseys all laid out and the names above the lockers.  I was ready to go man, I was so pumped.  We went down on the field and the coaches were getting everybody hyped up, my blood was pumping and I had the full adrenaline rush when they did the introductions over the loudspeakers and had our names on the Jumbotron.  It was awesome.

We went back to the hotel and changed before going to Papadakis restaurant and that was a good experience.  The owner of the restaurant, John (Papadakis, former USC liinebacker), he got up and put on a show.  He was dancing and singing, he got my dad up there dancing around, it was a lot of fun and we ate some really good food too.  After that we just went out with some of the players and had a good time.

Sunday we went to breakfast at some place on the beach, I can't remember the name, and everybody got a chance to talk individually with Coach Carroll and then we left.

It was just a fun trip overall and everything made me happy about my decision.  I got a chance to meet my future teammates and it was great to see that all the guys are so close.  My host on the first night was Lenny Vandermade and we got along real well.  We had a little connection and he was real cool but he had some family stuff on Saturday and so Fred Matua was my host that night and he was great too.

Everybody was wondering what Steve Smith and Maurice Drew are gonna do.  Maurice, he's the real deal and I know he liked it but the decision is gonna be up to him.  I know a lot of people doubt him but in my opinion he's the #1 back in the country.  He's something special, I'm not trying to dog anybody at Poly but look what he did to them two years in a row.  Steve, he's a funny guy man, he's cool.  I think he likes it as well but just like Maurice he needs to make his own decision.

Right now I'm at 6-4, 313 pounds.  I've put on a little bit of weight since my foot injury.  The foot's fine now and the SC coaches are just telling me to start running, doing a lot of cardio work, some long distance running.  I'm not looking to do any marathons or anything but just enough to start losing some weight. 

It was good to spend some time talking with Coach Orgeron too.  He's the main reason I chose SC, I mean I loved it anyways but he's kind of the cherry on top of my USC sundae.  He's just one of those guys who can fire you up on those days when you're strugling to make it through practice and I can't wait to play for him."


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