USC Prospects Shine at Nike Camp

There was talent all over the field during the Los Angeles Nike Camp at USC this weekend including Greg Townsend, Tre Madden and DeAnthony Thomas.

There was certainly talent all over the field during the Los Angeles Nike Camp at USC this weekend, but the most intriguing prospects in terms of USC recruiting were in the defensive line group.

With Greg Townsend, Todd Barr, Christian Heyward, Jason Gibson and USC commit Antwaun Woods all showcasing their skills, it was a great opportunity to get an up close look at a handful of the top linemen in California.

Four-star defensive end Greg Townsend, who lists USC as his leader right now with Washington, Oregon, TCU and Miami still in the mix, was named the MVP of the defensive line after a very strong performance on Sunday. The Beverly Hills High School standout has everything that you look for in a defensive end: speed, size, strength and athleticism.

Townsend was once thought to be close to making a commitment to the Trojans, but Scott Schrader reported that he now plans to take his time and let the recruiting process play out before choosing a college. USC fans shouldn't get worried though as the Trojans are still considered a strong leader.


Greg Townsend was the MVP of the defensive line.
One player that would really like to see Townsend in cardinal and gold is USC commit Antwaun Woods. The two elite linemen have become close throughout the recruiting process and would be an impressive local duo for the Trojans.

Greg Townsend was the immediate answer that Woods gave when asked which players he would like to have join him at USC in the future.

On Sunday, Antwaun Woods admitted that he wasn't quite in game shape and wants to drop some weight, but he did show the quickness and athleticism that has made him such a highly touted prospect. He will be an interesting player to watch grow and develop under the guidance of USC defensive coordinator Ed Orgeron.

Lakewood's Todd Barr was one of the most consistent performers on the defensive line. Barr is a very intense competitor and never took a play off. He had arguably the best day of the interior linemen.

The four-star recruit has been a regular visitor at USC practices this spring and will attend the Rising Stars Camp in June, hoping to earn a scholarship. Barr now has offers from every Pac-10 school except the Trojans, and is up to 19 total offers.

While the defensive line won several battles in the trenches, Crenshaw offensive lineman Marcus Martin opened a lot of eyes with his play. The 6-4, 349-pound lineman stopped Antwaun Woods in his tracks on two different occasions – and was singled out by both Woods and Barr as the top offensive lineman that they faced.

"He got me twice and I got him once, so he won that battle," Woods said.

Martin is still a raw prospect but he displayed good skills and is definitely a player to keep an eye on throughout the summer. He doesn't have any offers but said he has been in contact with the coaches at USC.

"I like coach T-Mac. He's a cool dude. Coach Cregg is a humble guy. He broke down their whole offensive scheme so I would understand it," Martin said. "I have a good relationship with everybody. With Coach Orgeron, I like that voice and his intensity."

Martin's teammate, DeAnthony Thomas, once again showed why he is such a highly touted recruit. The ultra-talented star from Crenshaw didn't look like he was going to participate early in the day, but he later decided to throw on the cleats and try his hand at defensive back.

Thomas, who was recently switched to cornerback by Scout.com, made the recruiting analysts look good by showing natural cover skills and taking home the MVP award for the defensive backs.

Thomas spoke with West Recruiting Manager Brandon Huffman after the camp, and let him know that the Trojans have a slight lead in the recruiting process. The battle to land the Black Mamba will likely come down to the two local schools - USC and UCLA.

The most impressive linebacker on the day was Tre Madden from Mission Viejo. After watching him on Sunday it is hard to imagine that he has only two offers right now. Madden, who racked up 115 tackles as a junior, looked very comfortable in coverage and made everything look easy during the linebacker drills. Madden is definitely one of the top local linebackers and could have several more offers before the start of his senior season.


DeAnthony Thomas had a solid day at cornerback on Sunday.


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