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Future Stars come out in droves

USC is once again holding its Rising Stars camp this week.

This is THE camp to attend if you are considered top high school talent. Players from around the country flock to the this camp to showcase their talent and hopefully walk away with a scholarship offer from USC. This year is no different...(read the whole article, there is some good info here)

With his voice rising, Carroll challenged everyone in the room gathered around him.

"We're going to ask you to work your butt off all day," he said.

He used his favorite word, "compete," several times before letting his true message sink in: "We expect you to give everything you got."

Anyone who listens to a Carroll talk, including a UCLA fan, probably would be willing at that moment to run through a door if that's what he sought. The man's charisma is hard to match.

And that helps explain why his two-day camp has become almost a must-appearance for any player who wants to be considered among the best in the Southland.

The talent is off the charts, and there were lots of players from outside California also in attendance.

For the most part this camp has been a pretty good barometer of just how good players are. Even if players don't end up at SC- what the coaches see in the players is usually backed up on the field later on regardless of how good a player is.

The goal for many players attending Rising Stars is to leave camp with an offer. USC was so impressed with Don Lugo DT George Uko that USC offered him on the first day of camp...and as per the rules he won't be back today.

[...] "After the camp, I talked to Coach Pete Carroll and he said he loved the way I worked and how I played. And they offered me a scholarship."

Uko told us, when we called, he was on his way home and was just offered a scholarship from USC.

So, now that USC has shown it has high interest in Uko, does he have have high interest in the Trojans?

"It's pretty high," said Uko about his interest level in USC.


This is National Recruiting Director's evaluation of Oku.

A prototype interior line prospect, Uko is quick off the ball and powerful at the point of attack. He's physically dominant in nearly every aspect of the game as he plays with great strength and leverage. He needs to play every down, but when he's motivated, he can do it all.

Uko is also being pursued by ucla; not surprising the kid is a stud. Here is his Profile.

Pete Carroll continues to be the dominant force on the west coast in football recruiting. He has also made his mark nationally but he continues grab a lot of the top talent out west. Sure, he missed a few this past recruiting cycle but that make stoke the fires to improve on next years class. SC has changed their recruiting tactics this year by not offering many players early like they did in the past. It is hard to know just how that will play out. Other programs targeted USC's commits once it was known that a player committed to USC and so SC had to play some defense. Even in the wake of the Reggie Bush investigation USC has continued to pull in nice recruiting classes.

We have seen other programs try and negatively recruit against SC because of the NCAA investigations but so far SC has held firm. A lot of that has to do with the sport itself. All players like exposure but football is different than basketball...technique is key to being successful and you can improve your technique even if you aren't getting exposure. You can have significant improvement between your freshman nad junior seasons but once you hit your junior season the die is pretty much cast. Either you have it or you don't. Point being is this...if SC gets hit with sanctions that ban them TV they will still be the preeminent program to get to becasue they have built up a solid pipline of talent and the have written the book on success.

It might be a bump in the road but it won't kill the program.