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Friday, September 21, 2012
WeAreSC Recruiting Mailbag

By Blair Angulo

WeAreSC recruiting reporter Blair Angulo answers reader questions in his mailbag every Friday. Have a USC recruiting question of your own? Submit it here.

Jeremy: Where does 'SC ultimately project Kylie Fitts? Seems like he can grow into a Shaun Cody pass-rushing DT-type.

Fitts has been recruited as a defensive end, so the assumption is that's where he projects best at the college level. But you're correct, Jeremy, Fitts does have the capabilities to be a superb interior pass-rusher. I saw him in person last week against Vista Murrieta, and he lined up inside on a number of occasions. Fitts is versatile, yes, but remember: The Trojans have commitments from the second- and fifth-ranked defensive tackles in Kenny Bigelow (Elkton, Md./Eastern Christian Academy) and Eddie Vanderdoes (Auburn, Calif./Placer). If Fitts turns out to be better suited in the interior, then he'll make the switch. For now, though, he appears to be an end.

Rich K. (Porter Ranch, Calif.): Given the O-line breakdown and lack of depth, will SC intensify recruiting more linemen? With the smaller recruiting class, how much preparation is done to project the success of freshmen? And can you project how long they will stay in school given early entry into the NFL?

I think we've seen efforts intensify in the 2014 recruiting class, which is currently made up of three offensive linemen: Toa Lobendahn (Lakewood, Calif./Lakewood), Jordan Poland (La Jolla, Calif./Country Day) and Casey Tucker (Chandler, Ariz./Hamilton). There are more pressing areas for the 2013 group -- namely in the secondary and on the defensive line -- but after next season there will be a definite need for offensive linemen.

With only 15-member classes, the coaches know there is little room for error from an evaluation standpoint. That's why a USC offer is as coveted as it is and why the coaches have been as selective as they have been. Preparation is highly important in that regard.

Justin (Phoenix, Ariz.): How serious is Su'a Cravens about his visits to Ohio State and Michigan? He seems to love Urban Meyer.

Every time I've spoken to Cravens, he's mentioned the "great job" Meyer is doing in Columbus. I think he wants to see other places and experience new campuses, just to solidify his stance with USC. It will be nearly impossible to flip Cravens. It'd be an all-time shocker, really. As Cravens told me last week, "It's Trojans for life."

Craig H. (Venice Beach, Calif.): [Nico] Falah winds up at USC... Yes or no?

I say yes.

The only scenario in which I see Falah ending up some place else is if the Trojans reel in five-star offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil (Lake City, Fla./Columbia), the nation's third-ranked player overall. He would be a tremendous addition to the class -- one the USC coaches wouldn't turn away. Falah, the only offensive tackle commit in the current class, would likely be the casualty.

But luring Tunsil to the West Coast won't be an easy task. In the end I think Falah ends up a Trojan.