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Wednesday, May 15, 2013
Trojans offer second in-state running back

By Blair Angulo

Four-star running back Royce Freeman (Imperial, Calif./Imperial) felt strongly that USC was going to offer him a scholarship sooner rather than later. A big indication came last week when new assistant coach Mike Summers made the 200-mile trek south from the Los Angeles campus to see Freeman work out.

That premonition came true Wednesday morning when Freeman called coach Lane Kiffin, who informed him he officially had a scholarship offer from the Trojans on the table.

"It's a great offer, there's no doubt about that," Freeman said. "The coaching staff really put in a lot of time to see me and evaluate it. I'm still taking it slow, but it's exciting."

Though it's a big development for the 6-foot, 220-pound back, he said he's in no rush to make a decision. Freeman intends to camp with Oregon in June and has no other plans for the summer.

Freeman, who earned running back MVP honors at the L.A. Nike Football Training Camp in March, has accumulated offers from the likes of Arkansas, Cal, Florida State, Stanford, Tennessee, UCLA and Washington, among many others. He averaged more than 12 yards per carry last year, finishing with nearly 2,500 yards and scoring 35 touchdowns.

"I would say they are up there right now," Freeman said of the Trojans. "I have been to the school already, since I visited for their junior day. Everything is great there. I like the good combination of academics and football. Plus, they have a great tradition, especially at running back."

Freeman became the second West Coast running back with an offer from USC, joining ESPN 150 member Joe Mixon (Oakley, Calif./Freedom).