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USC Football Recruiting: National Signing Day 2017 Overview

Meet the USC Trojans 2017 Recruiting class

NCAA Football: Rose Bowl Game-Penn State vs Southern California Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

USC Football - Class of 2017

ATH Greg Johnson -

“Johnson has spent time playing at just about every position on both sides of the ball but in college he will probably play defensive back. He has played both safety and cornerback and excelled at both.”

WR Joseph Lewis -

“Lewis is ranked as the #4 WR in the nation by 247sports and the #6 overall prospect in the state of California. Lewis has elite speed and with the loss of JuJu Smith-Schuster and Darreus Rogers, Lewis could make an immediate impact for the Trojans.”

RB Stephen Carr -

“Carr is almost the perfect running back for the modern game. At 6’0” 202 lbs., he has the size to run between the tackles and pick up the difficult yards. However, that is merely just the beginning of Carr’s skillset. He has excellent hands for a running back and can easily double as a slot receiver similar to former USC running back Tre Madden. This ability to catch the ball could be a key area where he can be a difference maker early in his career.”

OT Austin Jackson -

247 sports has Jackson as the #8 OT in the nation and the #1 prospect in the state of Arizona. With Isaiah Polo-Mao also joining the Trojans, USC has two of the best prospects from the state of Arizona. USC is thin at offensive line next year and there is a chance the 6’6” Jackson could make an immediate impact.”

USC Football - Clay Helton: 2017 Signing Day Presser

DT Jay Tufele -

“ Tufele is rated as a 4-star and is ranked as the 3rd best defensive tackle in the country by 247 Sports composite.

The 6’2 280 lb defensive tackle out of Bingham High School in South Jordan, Utah Tufele adds some strength to a weak spot on the Trojans roster, the interior defensive line.”

S Isaiah Pola-Mao -

“Pola-Mao’s greatest asset is his physicality. Listed at 6’4” 190 lbs., Pola-Mao has an imposing frame to go along with his 4.60 40 yard dash speed. When analyzing the Under Armour All-American’s game, perhaps the closest player comparison is fellow USC commit Bubba Bolden. Both players are tall for the safety position and play with a mean streak. Each are not afraid to make a huge hit against receivers attempting to make a catch over the middle of the field, and both have the frame to add more weight in college.”

S Bubba Bolden -

“Defensive coordinator Clancy Pendergrast will be ecstatic to earn the pledge of a physical player who can help fill the hole left by the graduation of Leon McQuay next season. Although he is still developing in certain areas of his game, USC fans should expect to see a lot of Bubba Bolden over the next few years.”

WR Randal Grimes -

“Athlete Randal Grimes has submitted his letter of intent to the USC Trojans today officially making him a Trojan. Grimes is rated as a 4-Star player (out of 5) and 247 sports ranks him as the 22nd best in the country.”

USC Trojans National Signing Day Report 2

DT Brandon Pili -

“Pili has perfect size for the nose position in Clancy Pendergrast’s 5-2 scheme. The primary role of this position is to take up two blockers in the middle in order to allow the defensive end and tackle to not have to face double teams. Stevie T was the perfect example of how to perfectly execute this role, and his performances could land him as a day 2 draft pick in April. Pili does not yet have Tu’ikolovatu’s strength, experience, or technique, but he does have more athleticism and a better frame that gives him the potential to be even better.”

OT Alijah Vera-Tucker -

“Vera-Tucker has the 112th highest rating out of all players in the country which brought plenty of offers from many teams across the nation. The UCLA Bruins, Washington Huskies, Michigan Wolverines, Oregon Ducks and several other schools offered Vera-Tucker a scholarship but he ultimately chose to be a Trojan. The 6’ 4”, 291 pound prospect is from Bishop O'Dowd High School in Oakland, California.”

OLB Levi Jones -

“At 6’3 and a little over 215 pounds, Jones has the ideal size for an outside linebacker and his speed will be a fantastic tool for DC Clancy Pendergast’s scheme. 247 Sports has the Austin, Texas native as the 6th rated outside linebacker in the class and one of the top 100 players in the country.”

DE Hunter Echols -

“in the short term, Echols will likely be positioned primarily as the predator backer. In this spot, Echols’ main responsibility will be rushing the passer and setting the edge—two of his biggest strengths. Although Echols is largely a hand-in-the-dirt player in high school, in this role Echols will be a standup pass rusher. This alteration will give Echols’ another advantage in speed and quickness against offensive tackles that could lead to a ton of sacks in cardinal and gold.”

USC Trojans National Signing Day Report

DE Jacob Lichtenstein -

“In addition to his physical attributes, Lichtenstein also has great play recognition that is particularly effective when diagnosing zone read plays. As a defensive end, his decision to either set the edge or pursue the running back usually determines the outcome of the play. Lichtenstein does a fantastic job of identifying who is carrying the football [. . .] Lichtenstein’s combination of physical and mental attributes give him a very solid base that should see him become a fantastic run defender for the Trojans.”

DT Marlon Tuipulotu -

“Tuipulotu is more polished than most lineman his age, but he also has a rare blend of strength and athleticism for a player his size. Whether it be bull-rushing a lineman or simply using his underrated foot-speed when playing on the outside, Tuipulotu can beat his opponents in a variety of ways. For a player that looks on the lighter side of 295 lbs., having a well-rounded set of skills to beat offensive linemen can be very valuable. Plus, it can open up the possibility of playing at multiple places along the defensive line.”

C Brett Neilon -

“Neilon is rated as a 4-Star player (out of 5) and 247 sports ranks him as the 2nd best center in the entire country. Neilon, unsurprisingly had offers from many teams including the UCLA Bruins, Washington Huskies, Stanford Cardinal, Colorado Buffaloes, and several more. The 6’ 2”, 280 pound prospect is from Santa Margarita Catholic High School in Rancho Santa Margarita, California.”

CB Je'Quari Godfrey -

“Godfrey has the physical attributes to be a starter at USC. 6’2” cornerbacks that can run a 4.4 40 yard dash are very rare commodities that usually end up playing on Sundays. It is surely no guarantee that Godfrey will tap into his huge upside, but this potential was simply too much for USC to pass up.”

USC Trojans Sign Josh Falo

TE Josh Falo -

“The addition of Falo gives USC another weapon at Tight End. USC has Tyler Petite and Daniel Imatorbhebhe returning next season at that position, but you can believe that Falo will have an opportunity to see the field early and be in the rotation. It never hurts to add depth to the roster, Falo could be one of the prospects in this 2017 recruiting class who could make an early impact on the field.”

OG Jalen McKenzie -

“the big lineman is talented, but he will need to improve physically before seeing playing time in cardinal and gold. At 6’4.5” and 307 lbs., McKenzie is a massive player who unfortunately lets this weight show a little too much in his play. He has solid technique in that he does an excellent job of playing with a low pad-level and using his legs to push defensive lineman backwards, but he is not particularly athletic.”

S/LB Juliano Falaniko -

“Falaniko could be the most underrated recruit the Trojans sign this cycle. Now, some might question a recruit who is rated in Scout's top 300 being called underrated, but the reality is most see this kid as a three-star level type guy. Falaniko is just so fast and moves so well across the field that I'm honestly wondering how he's not a consensus four-star.”

TE Erik Krommenhoek -

“a Three-star Tight End from Monte Vista High School. Listed at 6-5 and around 240 pounds, Krommenhoek will come into USC with a great frame to develop and help the Trojans offense with run blocking as well as pass catching ability. Tight ends in Tee Martin's offense tend to have some very crucial blocking assignments in many run schemes and will occasionally stay in to block on some pass plays. Blocking is certainly one of Krommenhoek's strengths and he should be able to help the Trojan offense in this aspect. He has also displayed good hands on film and will need to work on his route running in college, but Krommenhoek has the potential to be a dual threat tight end.”