Payton Looking at USC

With Signing Day now in the rearview mirror and the 2011 recruiting cycle underway, it's never too early to get a look at the top prospects in the 2012 class, and one player that has already emerged as one of the faces of the future is Oaks Christian wide receiver Jordan Payton.

With Signing Day now in the rearview mirror and the 2011 recruiting cycle underway, it's never too early to get a look at the top prospects in the 2012 class, and one player that has already emerged as one of the faces of the future is Oaks Christian wide receiver Jordan Payton.

The 6-2, 191-pound receiver already has verbal offers from Washington, LSU, Arizona State, Akron and Florida International and should have even more coming his way when 2012 recruits are allowed to receive official offers this September.

Payton will certainly be one of the top players in the 2012 class and get plenty of attention from the top programs across the country, but he admitted that he is already seriously considering a school that is right in his backyard.

"Everything is going well right now. I am hearing from LSU, USC, UCLA, Oregon, California, Washington, Arizona, Arizona State, Miami and Iowa State has hit me up a lot," Payton said, before adding that USC stands above the rest.

"I'm an SC guy. I will say it right now, I'm an SC guy. I like Washington and I like LSU, but I'm a USC guy," he said. "I grew up in L.A. close to USC, so everything about USC I love, from the competitiveness to Lane Kiffin. I like the area because I am familiar with it and that is my school."

With the recent coaching change, Payton made the trip to USC on Saturday to meet the new staff during Junior Day, and was thrilled to learn that they already knew all about him.

"It went well. I got there late because of the Steve Clarkson Camp but I sat down and had a talk with Coach Kiffin, Coach Morton and Coach Cregg," he said. "They just told me that they know that I am a player and they just want to see all of my film.

"It's great because I didn't know that Coach Kiffin knew about me, but he knew exactly who I was and even knew my forty time and all this stuff.

"It's great for me to know that everybody around the country knows how hard I am working over here."

The talented 2012 prospect grew up watching and rooting for the Trojans so being on campus and talking with the coaches was quite an experience.

"I was like shell shocked," Payton said. "I couldn't believe that I was actually in the presence of these coaches and all the Heisman Trophies."

So what would a USC offer mean to Payton's recruitment?

"If I get the chance coming up in these few couple of weeks to commit to USC, I guess I will do a soft verbal, and still go across the country and look at all the schools," he said. "But I still believe that my heart will be at USC."

Coming from Oaks Christian, the school that has produced several highly sought after recruits like Jimmy Clausen, Marc Tyler and Malcolm Jones, Payton has the potential to be one of the best of the bunch.

"What I bring to the field is I am really aggressive and I play fast," Payton said. "With my speed, it's hard for a corner to stop me because I don't look fast but when I am on the field I have plenty of speed."

As just a sophomore in 2009, he emerged as a key target for quarterback Nick Montana, and set the school record for touchdowns and yards in a season for a receiver by recording in 45 catches for 1,088 yards and 18 touchdowns.

Payton's productivity and playmaking ability earned him Scout's Top Sophomore in California honors.

Stay tuned to SCPlaybook.com for more on Jordan Payton throughout the recruiting process.


Oaks Christian wide receiver Jordan Payton is one of the top 2012 recruits in the West.


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If you have any questions, comments or suggestions you can reach Kevin Carden at kevin@scplaybook.com



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