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Thursday, April 18, 2013
ESPN 150 targets: USC

By Blair Angulo

With today's release of the ESPN 150, here's a look at 10 of USC's top targets in the 2014 class.

1. CB Adoree’ Jackson (Gardena, Calif./Serra)
5-foot-11, 183 pounds
ESPN 150 Rank: 5

Why they want him: There are concerns over USC’s depth at cornerback, and Jackson would vie for immediate playing time there. He’s also a dynamic playmaker on special teams, which the Trojans would need if Marqise Lee were to leave early for the NFL.

Who else wants him: Has offers from the likes of Florida, Florida State, LSU, Miami (Fla.), Michigan, Notre Dame, Oregon, UCLA and Washington.

Odds they get him: 40 percent

Tyler Luatua
California's top tight end, Tyler Luatua is a key target for the Trojans.
2. LB Raekwon McMillan (Hinesville, Ga./Liberty County)
6-2, 249
ESPN 150 Rank: 15

Why they want him: New defensive coordinator Clancy Pendergast’s 5-2 defensive front uses athletic linebackers, and McMillan undoubtedly fits that requirement.

Who else wants him: Ohio State is the early leader, but McMillan also has interest in Alabama, Clemson, Florida and Georgia, among others.

Odds they get him: 10 percent

3. ATH Michiah Quick (Fresno, Calif./Central)
6-0, 170
ESPN 150 Rank: 22

Why they want him: Quick could add depth at cornerback or become an instant contributor at receiver. USC usually has success in its pursuit of skill players, and Quick is one of its top in-state targets this year.

Who else wants him: Quick also has interest Alabama, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oregon and UCLA.

Odds they get him: 40 percent

4. TE Tyler Luatua (La Mirada, Calif./La Mirada)
6-3, 243
ESPN 150 Rank: 37

Why they want him: Luatua is the state’s top tight end, a physical blocker who isn’t afraid of contact. He’s exactly the type of player new offensive line coach Mike Summers would love to have.

Who else wants him: Alabama, where his brother, Isaac, plays offensive line, is the other early favorite, but seemingly every national power has offered.

Odds they get him: 50 percent

5. OT Casey Tucker (Chandler, Ariz./Hamilton)
6-6, 290
ESPN 150 Rank: 37

Why they want him: The coaching staff appears to have placed an emphasis on the offensive line in this cycle, grabbing commitments from Toa Lobendahn and Jordan Poland before the start of the junior seasons. Tucker, though, might be the best of the bunch.

Who else wants him: Hometown school Arizona State is making a strong push, as are UCLA, Stanford and Texas A&M. Alabama and LSU are also in steady contact.

Odds they get him: 50 percent

6. QB Keller Chryst (Palo Alto, Calif./Palo Alto)
6-4, 225
ESPN 150 Rank: 50

Why they want him: The only West Coast quarterback with an offer from USC, Chryst is the prototypical pocket-passer the Trojans usually target. He has a strong arm and, theoretically, would push Max Browne in the years to come.

Who else wants him: Stanford is the early favorite, but Chryst also has interest in Pittsburgh.

Odds they get him: 40 percent

7. ATH John Smith (Long Beach, Calif./Poly)
6-1, 185
ESPN 150 Rank: 62

Why they want him: Smith has the versatility to play either receiver or safety in college, and USC would gladly take him no matter his preference. The Trojans would like nothing more than to re-establish a pipeline at Long Beach Poly.

Who else wants him: Michigan, Notre Dame, Ohio State and UCLA also stand out early in the process.

Odds they get him: 50 percent

8. OG Damien Mama (Bellflower, Calif./St. John Bosco)
6-4, 352
ESPN 150 Rank: 68

Why they want him: Mama is strong and virtually immovable in the trenches. Summers intends to implement a smash-mouth brand of football, and Mama would be a solid piece to build around.

Who else wants him: Has offers from Alabama, Cal, Florida State, Notre Dame, Ole Miss, UCLA and Wisconsin, among others.

Odds they get him: 70 percent

9. DT Thomas Holley (Brooklyn, N.Y./Abraham Lincoln)
6-4, 285
ESPN 150 Rank: 92

Why they want him: Defensive line coach Ed Orgeron likes Holley’s aggressiveness and leverage at the point of attack, the highly touted prospect said. USC signed only one defensive lineman in February, making the position a big need in this recruiting cycle.

Who else wants him: Alabama, Boston College, Florida, Florida State, Notre Dame, Ohio State and many others have offered, too.

Odds they get him: 20 percent

10. RB Joe Mixon (Oakley, Calif./Freedom)
6-2, 205
ESPN 150 Rank: 135

Why they want him: The Trojans signed two power backs, Justin Davis and Ty Isaac, in the 2013 class, but it won’t stop them from pursuing Mixon, the top player at his position in the region.

Who else wants him: Mixon has nearly 40 offers, including Cal, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Michigan, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Texas A&M and UCLA.

Odds they get him: 20 percent