Friday, January 17, 2014
Roundtable: Five prospect to fill out 2014
By We Are SC staff
If you had five remaining spots to fill for the USC Trojans class of 2014, who would you fill them with and why?
Damien Mama: There’s a reason he is ranked as one of the top offensive guards in the country. He is a big man who has a chance to be a physically dominant player at the college level, although he is not expected to be available in the 2015 and 2016 seasons due to a Mormon mission.
John "Juju" Smith: There is a strong history of Long Beach Poly defensive backs heading to USC and Smith makes a lot of sense to be the next in that line. A versatile and talented player who could star on either side of the ball but who seems likely to end up at safety.
Five-star Adoree' Jackson appears to be coming down to USC and LSU.
Adoree' Jackson: For a long time it seemed as if Jackson was destined to head out of state, but the Trojans appear to have a real shot at signing him. There are challengers from the SEC -- primarily LSU -- but the Trojans had an in-home visit scheduled with Jackson this week and there is a legitimate chance to bring him in as a receiver, even though he is also one of the best corners in the country.
Charles Nelson: You can never have too many speed weapons on offense, and Nelson offers the kind of skill set that Steve Sarkisian used well last season with Jaydon Mickens. The Trojans already have Rahshead Johnson in this class as a player who can do similar things, but that shouldn’t prevent Nelson from coming in as well.
Fred Warner: This class could really use a pure linebacker, and Warner fits that need. He’s a longtime commit to BYU -- where his mother went to school -- and it seemed for a long time as if he had resisted the Trojans’ advances after an early summer offer. Sarkisian and company have made another run at him, however, and he could visit USC before signing day.
Adoree’ Jackson: Whether he comes in as a receiver or as a cornerback, Jackson is a player who can make an immediate impact for the Trojans wherever he lines up. A big-play performer on both sides of the ball, he’s also a crucially important recruit in symbolic terms as he’s perhaps the most highly touted prospect residing right in USC’s backyard.
John “JuJu” Smith: Another fantastic athlete capable of playing on either side of the ball, Smith likely projects as a safety, a position at which the Trojans don’t currently have a recruit committed. A playmaker with unique football instincts, he’s physically ready to contribute right away, and he comes from an important USC-feeder school in Long Beach Poly.
Damien Mama: The Trojans are extremely thin up front and they need another offensive lineman in this class. No one is bigger -- literally and figuratively -- than Mama. A dominating mauler with 6-foot-4 and 370-pound size, I think he would compete for immediate playing time at one of the guard positions at USC right off the bat.
Michiah Quick: The Trojans lack depth at receiver and at cornerback, and Quick is a prolific performer at both of those positions. Tremendously versatile, he’s one of those players that you just bring in and let him play wherever he wants, because he’s that good.
Fred Warner: It would be ideal for the Trojans to add one more linebacker in this class, and Warner would appear to be the best option available at this point. A thick, solidly built player with nice athleticism to boot, he has all of the tools to succeed at the next level. He would help shore up a position where USC would like to add depth.
Damien Mama: Is this considered a free square? If there is such a thing as a consensus choice, this would be the guy. He would be close to being the crown jewel in this class, especially with the other great offensive line prospects already committed. Seems like a lock for the Trojans, but there is a sense that anything could happen.
Bryce Dixon: With Xavier Grimble heading out early to the NFL, this very talented prospect might see action as a true freshman. He certainly was impressive in the Army game, but Trojans fans beware of that upcoming recruiting visit to UCLA. The question could become whether he is a big wide receiver or a true tight end. Sark would love to figure out that problem.
John "Juju" Smith would continue USC's pipeline with Long Beach Poly.
JuJu Smith: They call JuJu a silent commit, but talk with those inside and outside of Long Beach Poly and they will tell you they’d be stunned if this two-way standout performer doesn’t become a Trojan. Now that Uncle Johnny Nansen coaches at Troy, would JuJu really want to upset the family and pull a surprise? Don’t count on it.
Fred Warner: A very intriguing prospect since he is a BYU commit. The Trojans could use a big, physical linebacker, and Warner appears to fit the mold. However, players that usually commit to BYU don’t seem to change their minds much, and we’ll know soon what direction Warner is headed if he comes to Troy for an official visit. Don’t count your chickens on this one, but it is worth a recruiting try.
Adoree' Jackson: And now we get to perhaps the most publicized of all the remaining recruits. While Mama is critical in some many ways, so is Jackson. Is he the next Marqise Lee? Some think he has a shot at it. Most think he would be an NFL-bound DB if he played on that side of the ball. However, Sark has to sign him first and appears to signed off on Jackson as a receiver. If this Serra product even approaches Lee’s early achievements at Troy, it will be worth throwing him the ball.
JuJu Smith: By far my favorite recruit in this class, Smith can do it all in every phase. He loves offense but is aware that safety might be his calling. The Trojans would take him at any position, and so would many other programs.
Adoree' Jackson: There might not be a more electrifying recruit than Jackson, who is perhaps the closest thing to DeAnthony Thomas since the Trojans were burned a couple years ago. He wants to play receiver in college, and he would be able to step in right away.
Damien Mama: The massive lineman could be an immediate contributor and help the Trojans continue their efforts to develop a pipeline at Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco. USC's incoming offensive line class is already one of the best ever, but Mama could put it over the top.
Michiah Quick: He is a dynamic talent on both sides of the ball, but Quick prefers offense and could thrive in Sarkisian's scheme as a receiver. Plus, it's always good to land the top prospect in the Fresno area.
Fred Warner: USC doesn't have another linebacker like Warner in this class and they signed only one inside type last year in Michael Hutchings. Warner has great athleticism and would be a tremendous coup for Peter Sirmon to snatch him from BYU.