Lavon “LV” Bunkley-Shelton is a highly sought after wide receiver in the class of 2020. He spoke with Conquest Chronicles and revealed what impresses him about the USC Trojans, his relationship with the staff, and which fellow Junipero Serra turned USC players, are some of his favorite of all-time.
Lavon Bunkley-Shelton is making a name for himself as a four-star wide receiver from pass-catcher factory Junipero Serra High School in Gardena, California.
The 2020 recruit is the No. 39 receiver in the nation and the No. 20 player in the talented football state of California.
He is an Under Armour All-American Game commit with 23 offers from schools such as Arizona, Florida, Florida State, Michigan, Ohio State, Oklahoma, and USC.
The 5-foot-11, 174 pound recruit can play both sides of the ball, much like fellow Serra standout and USC phenom Adoree’ Jackson.
While he is rated by 247Sports and Rivals as a wide receiver, Bunkley-Shelton also sees playing time as a defensive back.
The Serra to USC pipeline is not lost on Bunkley-Shelton, especially with the multitude of star players who walked the same halls as the young recruit.
Who is his favorite? There are a few names to choose from that USC fans may recognize.
They are all my favorite. I still work out with John Jackson III and he’s helped me when I was a youngin’ at Serra. Marquise Lee and Deontay [Burnett] and [George] Farmer are all guys I grew up watching. But if I had to choose, I would say Woody [Robert Woods] is my favorite. He’s who I’m chasing now at Serra. I’ve already broken his in-season receiving record, tying it in three less games mind you, so I would say when it comes to Serra wide receivers, he’s the bar we are all chasing. Plus, when he comes back he sets time aside for us to work out and I can pick his brain about certain releases or routes vs. different types of coverages. He’s like a big brother to me and the reason I wear the deuce, number two.
The record formerly held by USC great Robert Woods, is the single season reception record Woods held at Serra with 75, Bunkley-Shelton passed Woods up in 2018 with 81 catches.
Through two years of varsity ball, the charismatic wide receiver has amassed 1,266 yards, 105 caches, and seven touchdowns.
In 2018, Bunkley-Shelton averaged 12.5 yards per catch and 92 yards per game. With that hefty statline it is not hard to see how he broke Woods’ record during his junior year.
Bunkley-Shelton’s film shows him to be an excellent route runner with the ability to make accurate adjustments on the ball, a perfect fit for USC.
The Trojans have a history of developing star studded receivers and turning them into NFL talent. It is something that factors heavily into Bunkley-Shelton’s thoughts on a school.
The history of wide receivers that make it to the league and the wide receivers coach, are two main factors for me in choosing a school. I’m looking to develop into the best receiver I can be, and I will need the best coach. Having someone who has played the game in college and the pros helps, because they can relate to what I will be going through to get better on and off the field
While the relationship with USC’s wide receivers coach Keary Colbert is still fresh, Bunkley-Shelton had good things to say about the Trojan legend.
“My relationship with coach KC is definitely new, it started after Junior Day this year. I look forward to our future meetings. He said he’s going to come see me soon at Serra.”
Bunkley-Shelton’s relationship with USC head coach Clay Helton, started strong and is only getting stronger as the days pass.
“I would say I have a pretty good relationship with coach Helton. It started right after the dead period last year. He was the first coach to contact me on the day juniors could start talking to staff, and that definitely made an impression on me.”
Bunkley-Shelton last visited USC in March, and one thing kept coming to his mind as he walked around campus.
“The biggest thing that stands out about USC, would have to be that it’s home. There are other big-time programs, but none of them are in my own backyard. Going to USC means my family and friends can watch me kill it and break more records.”
The Southern California native also shared what his childhood was like growing up a fan of the team down the street.
USC and Oregon were my favorite teams growing up. Oregon because of the uniforms and swag, USC because of the location and tradition. My dad sometimes would pick me up from school early to hit USC practice, (laughing) but don’t tell my mom. It’s how my dad and I bonded. I bought my first pair of Speed TD’s and Vapor Jets [Nike cleats] in the university store across the street next to Togo’s.
The four-star will have to choose between both of those team, as he also holds an offer from Oregon. Though there are three things he will be looking at, to decide on his final destination.
I look at academics. I wanna major in film studies or communications. Tradition, in the sense of the NFL bound receivers and if the team wins games. Last but not least, the wide receiver coach and strength and conditioning coach. I figure I’m probably going to spend the majority of my time with both of them, so they should definitely be people that will help me be a better man, husband, and father, as well as the best athlete.
Does Bunkley-Shelton have a top schools list or a time frame for his decision? The two may be announced sooner rather than later.
“A few schools are standing out right now. Mostly Pac 12 schools, but some other schools as well. I’m thinking of dropping a top 10 soon, so I can start focusing more on the schools I feel I would want to attend.”
USC certainly seems to be in good standing with Bunkley-Shelton. The location and film school, combined with its wide receiver track record, puts it as a school to beat for the Serra product.
Currently, USC has one wide receiver commit in the class of 2020, Narbonne’s Josh Jackson. In 2019’s cycle, the Trojans signed three new faces to the pass-catcher corps, Drake London, Kyle Ford, and Munir McClain.