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And so...the watch has begun

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Who will stay and who will go?

After SC's loss to K-State there was some speculation that Mayo would possibly stay for a second season. There had been speculation about this a week or so ago when he was supposedly preparing to enroll in summer school. I don't think anyone really expects him to stay though some feel he probably needs one more year to tune up his game. The bigger question is will Gibson or Jefferson stay? It would seem that whom Tim Floyd recruits will play a big role in how that decision is made.

O.J. Mayo wouldn't say whether he would return for a second season of college basketball following the final game of his freshman year, but the USC guard was emphatic about one thing: The Trojans need more quality big men.

"We could definitely use another inside player other than Taj [Gibson], who is a great player but really needs some help," Mayo said after sixth-seeded USC lost to 11th-seeded Kansas State, 80-67, in a Midwest Regional first-round game Thursday night at the Qwest Center.

That's the rub; who are the quality big men and are they interested in USC? The bigger question, is Tim Floyd aggressively going after them? Sure you could go after Fairfax's Renardo Sidney, according to Rivals Floyd has already made an offer, but the word is that there are academic issues. ucla went after him but Howland has cooled on him because of those academic issues and has not made an offer, and with Mike Garrett's comments the other day about character does he fit within those comments?

Sounds like Gibson isn't sure.

Mayo said there was no timetable for when he would make a decision about whether to return or make himself available for the NBA draft. Gibson also declined to address his status for next season.

"Right now I just want to get back to my team and just worry about this whole process of taking this early loss and get back to school," said Gibson, a sophomore who had nine rebounds.

Gibson will be 23 and a junior next season so its entirely possible that the clock is ticking on his opportunity to get to the NBA so he may jump simply for times sake. That would be a mistake if he can be muscled the way K-State muscled him how will he do against bigger more physical players?

Jefferson seems to be leaning towards staying.

Another key forward, Davon Jefferson, was rumored to be going pro, but indicated Thursday he likely would return for next season.

That is the best thing for him but he has to make sure he puts the effort into his studies or it won't help us at all.

So, the watch is on, how it turns out is anyone's guess.