Who will fill the remaining four scholarship spots in USC’s recruiting class?
CB Jalen Ramsey (Brentwood, Tenn./Brentwood Academy): It's a big year for defensive backs in the area, but the Trojans targeted Ramsey early and have pushed hard for him.
DE Joe Mathis (Upland, Calif./Upland): Mathis can get after the quarterback around the edge and would fit in well to this class.
OL Sean Harlow (San Clemente, Calif./San Clemente): You never want to run low on offensive linemen and Harlow is going to be a very solid addition for some program during his time in college.
CB Jalen Ramsey: Like the recent commits, there is enough cardinal and gold smoke that we feel there is a verbal fire coming. When you bring your parents out for a visit right after you’ve returned from Cali, well, he was still talking up the Trojans at The Opening.
S Max Redfield: The lure of playing with Su'a Cravens (Murrieta, Calif./Vista Murrieta) in the secondary and being compared to the historic combo of Ronnie Lott and Dennis Smith is pretty hard to ignore. Redfield is no dummy, and the Trojans are assembling too powerful a recruiting class for a Redfield to ignore.
S Tahaan Goodman (Rancho Cucamonga,Calif./Rancho Cucamonga): When it’s all said and done, it would be a surprise if Goodman isn’t a Trojan. With Chris Hawkins, his high school teammate and secondary partner, working the recruiting floor, this one seems like a no-brainer, but you know how recruiting goes.
All my instincts are telling me that the final spot will be taken by a defensive lineman, but a defensive back or wide receiver could be in the offering. The candidates will include CB Vernon Hargreaves III (Tampa, Fla./Wharton), WR/DB Tyree Robinson (San Diego, Calif./Lincoln), or DL Scott Pagano (Honolulu, Haw./Moanalua). If Robinson comes to Troy, it would probably also mean his talented linebacker twin brother, Tyrell, would fill the final spot somehow.
CB Jalen Ramsey: He showed his athleticism with one of the top performances at the SPARQ testing competing during The Opening. When you combine that with his height, long arms and good technique, you have another solid corner to put across from Chris Hawkins in the 2013 DB class.
S Max Redfield: He’s one of the few athletes that could be put next to Su’a Cravens at a camp with the thought that both of them could see the potential of playing together. The strategy paid off as Redfield says Cravens has been in his ear a lot about coming to USC.
DL Jason Hatcher (Louisville, Ky./Trinity): This will be my surprise pick. Hatcher impressed onlookers at The Opening with his skills and he mentioned USC as one of his four top choices along with Louisville, Florida and Tennessee. Orgeron has been known to pull a surprise player from the Southeast, so we’ll go with Hatcher for this year.
DB ????: There will likely be a fifth defensive back in this class, there are just too many candidates right now to really make a guess on who it will be. Someone like Vernon Hargreaves may seem like a longshot but his Twitter report after a campus visit this week said “USC = Perfect”. Can you rule him out? How about Tahaan Goodman, Priest Willis (Tempe, Ariz./Marcos de Niza), Leon McQuay III (Seffner, Fla./Armwood), etc.
S Max Redfield: Cravens steals a lot of the thunder locally but Redfield has proven to be just as skilled. He's the nation's second-ranked athlete for a reason and would be a fit anywhere you put him.
CB Vernon Hargreaves III: There's always room in a class for the nation's top-ranked cornerback. Fire up your thought bubbles, folks, and imagine a secondary pairing Hargreaves with Chris Hawkins and a dream safety tandem of Cravens and Redfield.
CB Jalen Ramsey: Ramsey is set to announce on July 16 and could very well be the next Trojans commit. Spots in the class are going fast but if his standout performance at The Opening is any indication, USC would be glad to have him.
S Tahaan Goodman: Consider a scenario in which the Trojans get Redfield, who based on his offensive skills could very well be the next Marqise Lee. Goodman wouldn't be a bad backup plan if the defense loses an athlete like Redfield.