Big weekend for USC
Questions about USC, ND, Jadeveon Clowney and more in this week's mailbag
Let's get right to the questions this week.
I'm a long-time reader and decided it was finally my time to ask a question. With all sources reporting Jim Harbaugh has signed a contract with San Francisco what are the chances of James Vaughters (Tucker, Ga./Tucker) opening up his recruitment and possibly landing at Ohio State?
Vaughters has said that he plans on visiting Ohio State and Florida before signing day and could also look at Miami. However, he remains committed to Stanford at this time.
Got recruiting questions? Corey Long has the answers. So send in your questions -- including your name and hometown -- to email@example.com.
What top prospects are still in the mix for USC?
Well I would've have said Christian Westerman (Chandler, Ariz./Hamilton), but he scrapped his plans to visit USC this weekend and seems to be down to Texas and Auburn. This weekend USC is rolling out the red carpet for plenty of stars including Under Armour All-Americans Karlos Williams (Davenport, Fla./Ridge Community), Cyrus Hobbi (Scottsdale, Ariz./Saguaro) and Erique Florence (Valley, Ala./Valley), among others. I'm almost positive that Williams will stick to FSU and Florence is headed to Auburn but Hobbi is certainly in play. Others like linebacker Anthony Sarao (Absecon, N.J./Holy Spirit), a Stanford commit, and uncommitted linebacker Lamar Dawson (Danville, Ky./Boyle County) are also in play.
I don't understand that if USC is supposedly on probation, and has lost scholarships, how come it still has more recruits committed than any other school in the country (24). That does not make a lot of sense to me. How many would they have without the sanctions?
In the overall scholarship number there's a loophole with early enrollees. Guys who sign with the program early and are enrolled for the winter/spring semester (i.e. right about now) count towards last year's number. So while USC has 24 commits, eight of them are early enrollees so that brings the number down to 16. The Trojans also have a couple of kids leaving the program so they will probably sign another four or five players. Next year is really when the lost scholarships will come into play.
I was just wondering about your take on the Aaron Lynch (Cape Coral, Fla./Island Coast) situation? Is ND the front runner? I also see that he is taking visits to Florida and Miami, which obviously worries me.
Yes, Notre Dame is the clear frontrunner for Lynch and I'm not sure if the visits to Miami and Florida will even take place if he decides to commit to the Irish this weekend and enroll early. If he doesn't enroll early, he might take additional visits and then it's nail-biting time. Lynch's situation is something you see every recruiting cycle with one or two prospects. There are a lot of rumors flying out there and each of the involved parties has their version of the truth.
It's always hard for UGA fans to get a good feel for Florida prospects. Is Ramik Wilson (Tampa, Fla./Jefferson) a big-time payer or someone that just kind of slid to UGA with the staff turnover at Miami and UF?
John T. Martin
Not at all. Wilson was heavily interested in Georgia early in the process. Miami and Florida got on him a little late but those schools (Florida in particular) were trying hard to get a visit from him after his performance at the Florida state football championships. Over the summer, Wilson had said he was not going to an in-state school because they were too busy looking at other linebackers to notice him. Even with late attention from Florida and Miami, he was a man of his word and Georgia got an excellent football player.
I've got two questions concerning Brent Calloway (Russellville, Ala./Russellville). What caliber of a running back is he? Where might I find film on him?
I'm glad you asked Reid! Calloway's video and evaluation can be found right here.
First off, Happy New Year to you and your family. I was curious to see what your thoughts are as it relates to Curtis Grant (Richmond, Va./Hermitage) and his college choice. Do you think it will be Florida, Ohio State or Virginia? Any insight would be appreciated.
Thanks Christos, same to you. I'm curious to see how Grant's visit to Florida goes this week. It's his first real meeting with Will Muschamp and depending on how it goes will tell me where Florida sits. I think Ohio State is a slight leader, but the longer things go the harder Virginia will push for a signing day shocker.
It seems to me that most people believe Ishaq Williams (Brooklyn, N.Y./Lincoln) will commit to Syracuse, do you think that Notre Dame still has a chance at landing him?
Pine Bush, N.Y.
This question was asked earlier in the week, but as of Friday morning Williams committed to Notre Dame according to his high school coach. Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly looks like he's closing strong and getting the types of players Notre Dame needs to find its way back into the national discussion.
I've heard that Tony Steward (St. Augustine, Fla./Menendez) is once again considering the Florida Gators. I have also heard that Jeoffrey Pagan (Asheville, N.C./Asheville) hasn't put the Gators out of the equation. Do they really have any chance to get either of these recruits?
I don't see it. Both prospects have said they might try to visit Florida but no definite trip is in the works. Steward is basically focused on his visit to Clemson this weekend and FSU next weekend and that's it. Pagan, I believe, is going to come down to either Clemson or Tennessee.
What do you hear about Jadeveon Clowney (Rock Hill, S.C./South Pointe)? Do the Seminoles have a shot?
I hear he's now going to visit FSU next weekend but as always with Clowney, things are subject to change. I think he's still headed to South Carolina and FSU is hoping to just give him something to think about. The Seminoles have a better shot at Jermauria Rasco (Shreveport, La./Evangel Christian), in my opinion.
Corey Long has been covering high school football and recruiting in the Sunshine State since 1995. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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