Tag:Lane Kiffin
Posted on: April 1, 2011 5:04 pm
Edited on: April 1, 2011 5:06 pm
 

March Pac-12 Early Commitment List

Posted by Bryan Fischer

It's the first day in April but also the final week in March and several schools have already hit the ground running in the class of 2012. Today we'll take a look at the verbal commitments in the Pac-12, where it's no surprise that uber-recruiter Lane Kiffin leads the pack in terms of verbal commitments early in the recruiting cycle.

Arizona (0)

Arizona State (1)

Wide receiver Kenny Lawler (Upland, Calif.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member

California (1)

Quarterback Zach Kline (Danville, Calif.)

Colorado (3)

Running back Benjamin Catalon (Houston, Texas)
Defensive tackle Tyler Henington (Denver, Col.)
Defensive end Clay Norgard (Highlands Ranch, Col.)

Oregon (0)

Oregon State (0)

Stanford (1)

Quarterback Skyler Mornhinweg (Philadelphia, Pa.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member

UCLA (0)

USC (5)

Defensive tackle Arik Armstead (Elk Grove, Calif.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member
Athlete Jaydon Mickens (Los Angeles, Calif.)
Wide receiver Jordan Payton (Westlake Village, Calif.), MaxPreps Top 100 for 2012 Watch List member
Wide receiver Darreus Rogers (Carson, Calif.)
Lineabcker Jabari Ruffin (Downey, Calif.)

Utah (0)

Washington State (1)

Wide receiver Dalen Jones (Woodland, Calif.)

Washington (2)

Wide receiver Braden Bishop (Mountain View, Calif.)
Running back Tairen Owens (Pasadena, Calif.)

Posted on: March 16, 2011 2:27 pm
 

USC makes Steve Dillon signing official

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Though we linked to a story in this morning's recruiting roundup, USC just made defensive end Steve Dillon's signing official. The official release is below:

Steve Dillon, a 6-3, 265-pound defensive lineman from Palmdale (Calif.) High, has signed a letter of intent with the USC football team, Trojan head coach Lane Kiffin announced today (March 16).

Dillon becomes the 31st member of USC’s 2011 football recruiting class, a group that some experts ranked among the best in the nation. Eight of those signees already have enrolled at USC for the current spring semester and will participate in spring practice, which begins on March 22.

Dillon’s 2010 senior honors included Super Prep All-Farwest, Prep Star All-West and Los Angeles Daily News All-Area second team. He had 74 tackles, including 19 for losses (with 9 sacks), in 2010.

As a junior in 2009, he made All-CIF Western Division as he had 31 tackles, 2 forced fumbles, 2 fumble recoveries and a blocked kick on defense and 6 catches for 144 yards (24.0 avg.) with 1 TD plus 1 rushing TD on offense.
Category: NCAAF
Posted on: March 3, 2011 2:47 pm
Edited on: March 3, 2011 2:55 pm
 

De'Anthony Thomas debunks Twitter rumors

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Social media can be a wonderful thing. Sometimes though, it is often the cause of unsubstantiated rumors.

Such was the case early Thursday morning as several Oregon fans and media outlets picked up on something tweeted by a Twitter account supposedly belonging to recent commitment De'Anthony Thomas:



The rumor started to pick up steam due in part to ESPN Radio host Colin Cowherd saying on his national radio show that a major program was about to be cited for NCAA recruiting violations. Brooks of SportsByBrooks.com confirmed shortly afterwards that the program Cowherd was talking about was Oregon. The NCAA also recently sent a Notice of Allegations to USC head coach Lane Kiffin due in part to his recruiting practices while he was at Tennessee

Thomas was committed to USC for several months before eventually signing with the Ducks in a last minute change of heart. 

When reached by phone Thursday morning, Thomas said the Twitter account is not his and that there are no truth to the rumors.

"No," he said flatly when asked if the NCAA had spoken with him.

Two sources also confirmed to CBSSports.com that the NCAA is not looking at Thomas nor have they heard anything about an investigation into Oregon's football team.

All rumors begin somewhere and with the increased look into football recruiting that the NCAA has taken, it's easy to see why these rumors seem to spread like a wildfire.

This one, however, seems to be put out.

Screenshots courtesy of SportsbyBrooks and SBNation's Holly Anderson.
Posted on: February 28, 2011 10:29 am
 

Rutgers Badger Sports Elite 7-on-7 Top Players

Posted by Bryan Fischer

PISCATAWAY, N.J. - The Badger Sports Elite 7-on-7 started it's 2011 campaign on the campus of Rutgers this past weekend and many of the top prospects from across the Northeast were looking to make an impression over the course of the two-day event.

Here's just a few of the players who stood out from the crowd.

Quarterbacks

Casey Cochran, 6-foot-1, 200 pounds, Monroe, Conn. 
One of the top quarterbacks on day one, Cochran was an impressive signal caller. He lacks ideal height but makes up for it with a very strong arm that can make every throw. He has a good release and throws a very pretty, catchable ball to his wide outs. He's ok on the move and can work on his weight transfer and keeping his feet closer together when in the pocket. The ball just jumps out of his hand though and he should be adding to his only offer from Boston College.

Blake Rankin, 6-foot-4, 200 pounds, Bloomsburg, Pa. 
Rankin has ideal size for a pro-style quarterback and had a very nice deep ball, putting just the right amount of touch on most of them. He doesn't have the strongest arm but is very accurate and could develop into a very well-rounded quarterback. He currently has an offer from Rutgers.

Max Ward, 6-foot-1, 190 pounds, Steelton, Pa. 
One of the impressive things about Ward was his tight spiral on just about every ball he threw. A gunslinger, he has a cannon on his shoulder and that makes up for what he might lack in ideal height. He currently has an offer from Akron.

Kevin Olsen, 6-foot-3, 200 pounds, Wayne, N.J., class of 2013 
Despite being younger than many of the quarterbacks in the competition, Olsen was near or at the top. He has an excellent frame but needs to add a few pounds to it. He was a little indecisive with some throws but he also had a very quick release and above average footwork. The younger brother of Chicago Bears tight end Greg, several programs are showing interest early on.

David Sills, 6-foot-2, 190 pounds, Bear, Del., class of 2015 
Sills was the big name at the event as the large number of cameras trained on his every drop back would attest. The first thing you notice is his impressive size for just an eighth grader. He had a good understanding of what the defense was doing but still tried to force a few throws. He wasn't as accurate as he has been at other competition but he was maybe the most vocal leader. Seeing him go through an event like this shows why Lane Kiffin offered him a scholarship as a eighth grader.

Brandon Napoleon, 6-foot, 175 pounds, Jersey City, N.J. 
Napoleon is being recruited as an athlete but he was impressive as a quarterback at the event. He threw a nice ball with some zip and a spiral every time. He's light on his feet and can make every throw on the field. Holding double digit offers, Rutgers, Virginia Tech and North Carolina among them.

Ryan Burns, 6-foot-5, 210 pounds, Ashburn, Va., class of 2013 
A big quarterback with a decent drop back, he showed off a very big arm and quick release better than most of the older quarterbacks. His feet get too wide at times which causes him to use almost all arm on some throws. That said, he can throw the ball into any window and already has an offer from Boston College.

Wide receivers

Deontay McManus, 6-foot-2, 210 pounds, Baltimore, Md. 
One of the top players at the competition, McManus is being pursued by just about every program in the country. A long-strider when he gets going, McManus is more fast than quick. He displayed some impressive ball skills and attacked the ball in the air, rarely letting anything get by him that was thrown his way. Despite his skills at wide receiver, it wouldn't be too surprising to see him move to safety or even outside linebacker in college. His double digit offer list includes Alabama, Clemson, Georgia, Ohio State and Tennessee among others.

Stefon Diggs, 6-foot-1, 190 pounds, Olney, Md. 
Diggs was easily one of the top receivers in the competition and was explosive everywhere he went. One of the fastest players on the field with great feet that allowed him to turn on a dime, Diggs was very aware of where the defenders were and would slow it down in order to find open spots in zone coverage. An Army All-American Bowl invitee, he has offers from Alabama, Cal, Florida, Georgia, Miami, Notre Dame and others. He said he will likely pick a school outside of the northeast.

Anthony Cooper, 6-foot, 180 pounds, Virginia Beach, Va. 
A speedy wide out on a team full of them, Cooper stood out with his impressive ability to catch and run. He also plays defensive back and had a very nice back pedal and good change of direction. Local programs Virginia and Virginia Tech have already offered.

Romond Deloatch, 6-foot-4, 215 pounds, Hampton, Va. 
Physically the most impressive receiver at the event, Deloatch was a nightmare for opposing defensive backs to cover. He's still a bit raw but displayed quick feet and a good ability to turn on a route quickly. Very fluid while running routes, he's a bit reminiscent of class of 2011 receiver Quinta Funderburk. During one play, he snatched the ball out of a corner's hand on a fade route. He has offers from Florida State, North Carolina and Virginia.

Tight end

Charles Tapper, 6-foot-4, 240 pounds, Baltimore, Md. 
One of the most physically imposing recruits at the event, Tapper didn't play too much. He will likely be a defensive end or outside linebacker in college but he did flash some potential at tight end. He just picked up an offer from Oklahoma and should be receiving more as the weeks go on.

Kalief Joyner, 6-foot-4, 230 pounds, Middle Village, N.Y 
More of a receiving tight end in this event and likely at the next level, Joyner has good height and does a solid job of getting off the line. He's not super fast or quick but he does go over the middle and finds spots in zone coverage. He has great hands and several programs are on the verge of offering.

Devin Funchess, 6-foot-4, 210 pounds, Farmington Hills, Mich. 
A very tall target, Funchess needs to start packing on the pounds to play tight end. He doesn't have great speed as a receiver but could be very good at tight end with his hands and moves in space. Michigan and Michigan State are among the schools to offer.

Defensive back

Brandon Banks, 6-foot-1, 175 pounds, Brandywine, Md. 
An impressive performance over the weekend from Banks, who might have been the top corner on the field this weekend. A bit skinny, he still wouldn't give up any ground to opposing wide receivers. Fast and smooth, he sinks well when playing in cover-2 and excelled in man coverage. He got to top speed quickly and no receiver was able to create much separation. He currently has an offer from Maryland but should be collecting more soon.

Ronald Darby, 6-foot, 180 pounds, Oak Hill, Md. 
Darby was one of the top players at the event and has seen just about every program send out an offer to him. One of, if not the, fastest players running around the field, he played mostly on defense at safety before eventually playing on both sides of the ball. He was very impressive in coverage with a good backpedal and quick turn to break on the ball. He holds offers from Miami, Florida State, USC, Notre Dame and others and has five-star potential at multiple positions.

Devin Fuller, 6-foot, 185 pounds, Old Tappan, N.J. 
Fuller played on both sides of the ball but stayed mainly in the secondary. He could play a number of positions in college, from quarterback to cornerback to receiver and is being recruited as such. He has very quick feet and reacts well to what is being thrown at him. He was very fluid at cornerback and safety and might be best suited there. He currently has offers from Michigan, Florida State, Maryland, Rutgers and Penn State among others.

Linebacker

Dorian O'Daniel, 6-foot-2, 200 pounds, Olney, Md., class of 2013 
A running back and linebacker, O'Daniel looked a tad better playing on defense for the Maryland Speed. He has excellent closing speed but did tend to guess a little bit after his initial drop into coverage. He's very physical and despite being just a sophomore, already holds offers from Maryland, N.C. State, Pitt and Virginia.

Eli Ankou, 6-foot-3, 240 pounds, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada 
Easily the best player at the event from north of the border, Ankou turned a few heads with his size and agility. He was pretty good side-to-side and played on the balls of his feet. His hips are a bit stiff in coverage but he runs well enough to chase faster players down.

Kenny Bigelow, 6-foot-3, 260 pounds, Bear, Del., class of 2013 
He will play defensive end at his size but he came out and competed at linebacker at this event. He was a little too upright and needs to bend at the hips more when standing up but for a young defensive end, did pretty well. At his size, he could develop into a strong side defensive end or slim down and play outside linebacker if needed. He has an offer from Auburn already and is very impressive for a sophomore.

Abner Logan, 6-foot-2, 215 pounds, Salem, Mass. 
One of the best linebackers in coverage, he could be a great fit at outside linebacker in a 4-3 scheme. He was a tad stiff at times but he has a great base and is very fluid when moving around. He might be a name that starts to receive offers by the bucketload as the summer progresses based on what he showed over the weekend.

Jazzmar Clax, 6-foot-1, 230 pounds, Freehold, N.J. 
Already on the 2012 All-Name team, Clax looked like a good fit as an inside linebacker in a 3-4 scheme. He was above average on his coverage drops and opened his hips nicely to turn and run. He has an offer from Rutgers.

Posted on: February 27, 2011 10:23 am
 

2011 Recruiting Oscars

Posted by Bryan Fischer

The Oscars are tonight and while Hollywood and the recruiting world don’t often mesh, we’re about to change that. Although the class of 2011 didn’t put on a tuxedo to announce what college they’re committing to (though we assume that’s coming), pretend for a second that they did and the NCAA handed out some golden statues to the best stories of the year. Who would they go to?

May we present the Recruiting Oscars for 2011:

Best Picture goes to... 

Georgia running back commit Isaiah Crowell for ‘Bulldog’s are for me.’

Actor in a leading role goes to... 

Georgia commit Jay Rome for being the ringleader for the ‘Georgia Dream Team.’

Actor in a supporting role goes to...

Alabama offensive lineman Arie Kounadjio for helping convince his brother Cyrus to attend Alabama and then announcing it to the world on his Twitter account.

Best costume design goes to... 

Alabama for the presentation (and subsequent controversy) of 'Fax Cam' and the outfit worn by Fax Cam Girl.

Best director goes too... 

Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher, who, despite being a head coach for less than two years, cleaned up in the state of Florida and brought in one of the top classes in the nation.

Best visual effects goes to... 

Defensive back Floyd Raven, who's mother designed a picture perfect forgery of a Letter of Intent to send to Ole Miss before Raven eventually signed with Texas A&M.

Best makeup goes to...

USC head coach Lane Kiffin for being able to put a lot of makeup on USC's sanctions and scholarship limits to bring in 30 recruits to the land of Troy.

Best adapted screenplay goes to... 

It's rare for sequels to win Oscars but Jadeveon Clowney takes home the golden statue for 'Number One Recruit Waits to Sign.'

Posted on: February 20, 2011 11:13 am
 

Class comparison: USC vs. UCLA

Posted by Bryan Fischer

We're still digesting the class of 2011 and what better way to look at it than through the lens of two rivals. USC and UCLA have a bitter rivalry but it's been a bit one-sided on the recruiting trail for the last decade. Rick Neuheisel didn't have as many scholarships to hand out for the class of 2011 but in the end, that didn't matter that much.

USC vs. UCLA
Quarterback

Cody Kessler and Max Wittek vs. Brett Hundley. USC has always been able to pluck the best quarterback from Southern California and this year they grabbed not one, but two of them (and got them to enroll early to boot). That said, Hundley is an exciting quarterback and it would shock no one if the early enrollee was the starter coming out of fall camp. He should fit in the Pistol offense better than any other UCLA quarterback under Neuheisel.

Running Back
 

Javorius Allen and Amir Carlisle vs. Steven Manfro. Allen is a bigger back that should vie for playing time after a redshirt year as USC’s backfield thins out. Carlisle is a very versatile guy and is a steal (literally, from Stanford) in this class.

Wide Receiver
 

George Farmer, Victor Blackwell, Junior Pomee and Marqise Lee vs. Devin Lucien. Not only does USC beat UCLA four-to-one in terms of numbers, Lucien might not be as talented as any of the four wide outs the Trojans bring in. Farmer is the top wide out in the country and would have been enough to tilt this category in favor of USC alone.

Tight end

 

Raymond Nelson and Connor McDermott. USC didn’t sign a tight end in this class, though Pomee could add weight and slide inside. McDermott’s height might make him an offensive tackle at the next level but he’s very athletic. Nelson is a solid fit and could see early playing time.

Offensive Line
 

Jeremy Galten, David Garness, Cyrus Hobbi, Marcus Martin and Aundrey Walker vs. Jake Brendel, Will Oliver, Torian White and Ben Wysocki. Both teams were thin at the offensive line and they both addressed their needs. USC grabbed two of the top interior lineman in the country in Hobbi and Walker and also grabbed some junior college players to help with the numbers. Brendel could be a sleeper and White was one of the better lineman from Southern California.

Defensive Line
 

Charles Burks, Greg Townsend Jr., J.R. Tavai, DeVante Wilson, Christian Heyward, Cody Temple, Antwaun Woods and Steve Dillon vs. Sam Tai, Kevin McReynolds and Brandon Tuliaupupu. Townsend, Woods and Heyward are three players with all-league potential and there’s no telling with the rest of the group once Ed Orgeron gets his hands on them. McReynolds should see early playing time and also has the tools of an all-conference performer.

Linebacker
 

Lamar Dawson, Dallas Kelley, Tre Madden and Anthony Sarao vs. Ryan Hofmeister, Mike Orloff and Aaron Wallace Jr. UCLA picks up several players with high upside, especially the physically impressive Wallace. USC grabs players who will be expected to help out right away and talented out-of-staters Dawson and Sarao are two very good gets for linebackers coach Joe Barry.

Secondary

Ryan Henderson and Isiah Wiley. UCLA didn’t sign a single defensive back in 2012, which is hard to believe. Henderson is very nice prospect and Wiley should be able to get into the rotation right away.

Overall
 

Call it a knockout in favor of the Trojans, this one wasn’t even close. UCLA was limited in the number of scholarships they were able to give out but then again, USC was supposed to be too. In the end, the Trojans signed double the number of players, which is quite amazing and a credit to how good a recruiter Lane Kiffin is. Given the sanctions, one would have expected UCLA to take advantage with this class but it appears they took advantage of no one in the class of 2011.

Posted on: February 7, 2011 7:00 pm
Edited on: February 7, 2011 10:45 pm
 

Auburn offers 2015 quarterback David Sills

Posted by Bryan Fischer

It’s now safe to say that Lane Kiffin is no longer the only head coach to offer a scholarship to a recruit without a learner’s permit.

While many coaches are just beginning to turn their attention to the class 2012, Auburn head coach Gene Chizik extended an offer to class of 2015 quarterback David Sills, his quarterback coach Steve Clarkson told the Los Angeles Times.

Sills famously committed to USC after being verbally offered a scholarship by Kiffin while still in middle school last February. The then 13-year-old Sills had not even played a varsity football game at the time of the offer.

Sills is the latest in a long line of quarterbacks tutored by Clarkson, who lists Super Bowl-winning quarterback Joe Montana and Heisman Trophy winner Matt Leinart among his pupils.

In response to Sills' early scholarship offer, a new NCAA rule was proposed last year that would prohibit verbal scholarships offers before July 1st of a recruit’s junior year. The proposal was defeated at the recent NCAA convention in San Antonio. A student-athlete may receive a written offer after August 1st of their senior season.

The 6-foot-1, 160 pound Sills led the Red Lion Christian Academy (Del.) varsity to a 6-3 record last season as an 8th grader.

Auburn also extended an offer to teammate Kenny Bigelow in late January, a sophomore defensive lineman.

Update: Sills' father tells the Times that the Tigers did not extend an offer. Clarkson maintained that Auburn has extended a scholarship offer to a different Times reporter.
Posted on: February 4, 2011 5:13 pm
Edited on: February 4, 2011 5:15 pm
 

Video: USC Signing Day Recap

Posted by Bryan Fischer

Lane Kiffin didn't seem to be slowed by any NCAA sanctions on Signing Day, reeling in an impressive class for 2011. Both in-state and out, USC grabbed a number of great recruits to help restock the Trojan roster.

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com