The USC men's basketball team will have its second scrimmage of the preseason practice schedule on Saturday morning. Watching that scrimmage will be consensus four-star recruit Brandon Sampson, who is in town this weekend for an official visit.
Sampson is a Class of 2015 shooting guard that is the top recruit in the state of Louisiana. He recently visited St. John's for an official and has also taken official visits to Cal and hometown LSU. UCLA is also in the mix.
Similar to USC sophomore Julian Jacobs, the 6'4", 180-pound wing is the type of player that can do a little bit of everything. He said in a recent interview with Rivals that assistant coach Tony Bland has told him USC would use him at both the point and shooting guard positions.
Here's ESPN's scouting report on Brandon Sampson:
Sampson has all the physical traits to be a elite transition he can attack the rim and throw down the tomahawk dunk or nail the pull-up jump shot. He shows deep three point range and he can help at the point with his ability to drive draw and kick pass and start the halfcourt offense.
Jeff Jones, Sampson's coach at Madison High School in Baton Rouge, La., talked to SNY.tv's Adam Zagoria about Sampson's prospects and how he feels about each school. Jones believes Brandon Sampson can be a potential "program changer:"
Man, he could be a program-changer," he said. "He’s one of the few player’s who’s gotten better and better every year and he’s still tries to get better. He’s a hard worker. Very skilled shooter, but very athletic. PLays well above the rim. Whichever one of those programs he chooses, they’re going to get one heckuva player."
And here's what Jones had to say about USC and the job the coaching staff has done:
In terms of USC, Jones said, "Coach [Andy] Enfield has come in and really done a great job in a short period of time, making up a lot of ground. Again it’s that Pac-12 Conference and Los Angeles, California. For a 17-year-old kid, there’s a lot to like, beaches and all that good stuff.
According to Jones, Brandon Sampson likely won't make a decision until the spring, but being away from home shouldn't be a concern as Sampson recently told Rivals:
"Distance will not be a factor as I want to go to a program where it gives me the 'best situation' and then be prepared for the next level," Sampson said.
Playing in a very competitive Pac 12 conference is one way to get ready. The conference sent six teams to the NCAA Tournament last season, and Sampson is confident USC's coaches will put the 'work ethic' into refining his game.
"I want to be exposed in the PAC - 12 as that great talent can bring the best out of me." Sampson said. "Some schools might not have that desire to help their players out, but with USC its a different feeling with the coaches.
The Trojans currently have the No. 20 overall class, according to Scout's latest rankings. They currently have commitments from a pair of top 50 recruits in Chimezie Metu and Bennie Boatwright.