While not a full scholarship commitment, the USC Trojans have landed an underrated three-star prospect for the 2015 recruiting class. Gardena Serra tight end Caleb Wilson, the son of defensive line coach Chris Wilson, who will enroll at school this Fall at a position in desperate need of depth.
Now what makes this news interesting is that Wilson turned down a scholarship offer to play quarterback at Old Dominion, deciding that playing with his father at a local school would be the best move for his future. USC has offered Wilson a preferred walk-on spot for the team, a move that does not affect the 19 scholarships left on the table for the 2015 class.
"Coach (Steve) Sarkisian liked how well I did at the all-star game and I like the depth chart at USC," Wilson told Ryan Bartow of 247sports.com on Monday. "I'm excited about the opportunity at USC."
The 6-foot-5, 215-pounder runs a 4.7-second 40-yard dash and was rated the 125th-best prospect in California, according to 247sports.com. What both parties ultimately realize is that since Caleb is the son of a USC employee, the institution has a contractual requirement to pay for his tuition.
According to the USC tuitions website, the university makes Caleb's tuition 100% free as you long as you (the employee) remain a benefits-eligible, full-time employee, which certainly is the case for Wilson. But this only applies for employees once you have worked two full years on campus.
So then assuming Coach Wilson sticks around this season, Caleb will be a preferred walk-on but will then be given a full academic scholarship starting next fall during his second season on campus. Wilson is a nice pickup on a variety of fronts, especially as Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick and Bryce Dixon return as the only scholarship tight ends and have very little experience.