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O/NSO: Class of 2020 special recruiting edition

The Obvious:  After two separate signing dates, December 2019 and February 2020, the Trojans recruiting Class of 2020, barring any late additions and/or NCAA Transfer Portal transactions, is finally complete.

The Not So Obvious: So, take a look at the O/NSO bios tidbits below, and remember, it’s not all about star rankings before entering college but performance in college. In other words, player development under Clay Helton and his staff will be critical and again will be highly scrutinized.

The Obvious: A spring enrollee, the Trojans signed wide receiver Gary Bryant Jr.(5-11, 165) from Riverside, California (Corona Centennial).

The Not So Obvious: Bryant wore No. 1 at Centennial, a Trojans’ offensive number currently available. Did you know other notable Centennial alumni include Drake Jackson, Brandon McGee, Vontaze Burfict, Will Sutton (football), Ike Anigbogu (basketball)?

247 composite national ranking: No. 45

Honors: 2019 PrepStar Dream Team, Tacoma News Tribune Western 100, Orange County Register Fab 15 first team, All-CIF Division 1, Southern California News Group All-Region and Riverside Press-Enterprise All-Area Offensive Player of the Year

Highlights: https://www.hudl.com/video/3/9321010/5a371af519b0390d54e9a819

Corona (Calif.) Centennial wide receiver Gary Bryant (photo above – No. 1) announces for USC at the All-America Bowl in San Antonio on national television he will play for the Trojans.

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The Obvious: A fall enrollee,the Trojans signed offensive lineman Casey Collier (6-7, 290) from Baytown, Texas. (Barbers Hill HS).

The Not So Obvious: Collier wore No. 77 at Barbers Hill, a Trojans’ offensive number currently worn by OL Jason Rodriguez. Notables from Barbers Hill High unavailable.

247 composite national ranking: 1327

Honors: 2019 PrepStar All-Central Region and All-District 12-5A Division II first team

Highlight: https://www.hudl.com/profile/4720044/Casey-Collier

Offensive line coach Tim Drevno (photo above) will have six new freshmen offensive linemen to teach, which includes Casey Collier.

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The Obvious: A fall enrollee,the Trojans signed offensive lineman Andres Dewerk (6-7, 295) from San Jose, Calif. (Los Gatos HS).

The Not So Obvious: Dewerk wore No. 56 in high school, a Trojans’ offensive number currently available. Did you know that other notables from Los Gatos High include Trent Edwards, Jared Allen, Kiko Alonso, Hugh Campbell (football), Bill Chase, Michael Couchee, Logan Schafer (baseball), Lynn Burke, Christine Von Saltza (Olympics), Joan Fontaine, Olivia de Havilland, Audrey Long (motion pictures), Carrie Yazel (Playmate of the Month)?

247 composite national ranking: 1369

Honors: 2019 PrepStar All-Western Region

Highlights: https://www.hudl.com/profile/10591582/Andres-Dewerk  

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The Obvious: A fall enrollee, the Trojans signed offensive lineman Courtland Ford (6-5, 305) from Cedar Hill, Texas (Cedar Hill).

The Not So Obvious: Ford wore No. 77 at Cedar Hill, a Trojans’ offensive number currently worn by OL Jason Rodriguez. Did you know that notable Cedar Hill High alumni include Quincy Adeboyjo, Josh Allen, Dezmon Briscoe (football), Ugo Ihemelu (MLS), Jason Richardson (2012 Olympics)?

247 composite national ranking: 738

Honors: 2019 PrepStar All-Central Region, AP All-State 6A second team and All-District 7-6A first team

Highlights: https://www.hudl.com/profile/8264664/Courtland-Ford   

Cedar Hill (Texas) HS offensive tackle Courtland Ford (photo above) will compete for the Trojans when he arrives in the fall.

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The Obvious: A spring enrollee,the Trojans signed wide receiver Joshua Jackson Jr. (6-1, 180) from Westminster, Calif. (Harbor City Narbonne).

The Not So Obvious: Jackson wore No. 1 at Narbonne, a Trojans’ number currently worn by WR Velus Jones (2020 NCAA Transfer Portal). Did you know that other notables from Narbonne include Tom Graham, Nnamdi Asomugha, Major Culbert, Dashon Goldson, Roy Lewis, Brandon Manumaleuna, Jonathan Smith, Uchenna Nwosu (football), Marc Brown (TV news in L.A.), Rod Craig, Paul Pettit, Chad Qualls, Jeff Dedmon (baseball), Lisa Willis, Ebony Hoffman, Loree Moore (WNBA), Joe Puerta (rock band Ambrosia), B.B. Dickerson (bass player in War), Bo Derek (actress)?   

247 composite national ranking: 452

Honors: 2019 PrepStar All-American, Tacoma News Tribune Western 100 and South Bay Daily Breeze All-South Bay first team

Highlights: https://www.hudl.com/profile/6596350/Joshua-Jackson-Jr  

Trojans’ wide receiver coach Keary Colbert (photo above) is all smiles in looking forward to coaching incoming wide receivers Joshua Jackson Jr. and Gary Bryant Jr., both of whom are enrolled and ready for spring ball.

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The Obvious: A spring enrollee, the Trojans signed placekicker Parker Lewis (6-3, 200) from Phoenix, Arizona (Saguaro).

The Not So Obvious: Lewis wore No. 29 at Saguaro, a Trojans number offensive number worn by RB Vavae Malepeai. Did you know that prominent Saguaro alumni include Mike Brown, D.J. Foster, Dale Hellestrae, Christian Kirk, Byron Murphy (football), T.J. Beam, Jason Hershner, Jay Pettibone ((baseball), Sandra Bernhard (actress/comedian), Bruce Rauner (former Governor of Illinois)?

247 composite national ranking: 2365

Honors: 2019 MaxPreps All-American first team, PrepStar All-Western Region, Tacoma News Tribune Western 100, Max Preps All-Arizona first team, Arizona Cardinals Arizona Special Teams Player of the Year and National Football Foundation Luis Zendejas Arizona Senior Placekicker of the Year

Highlights: https://www.hudl.com/profile/5394374/Parker-Lewis

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The Obvious: A fall enrollee,the Trojans signed offensive lineman Andrew Milek (6-5, 290) from Chandler, Arizona (Brophy Prep HS).

The Not So Obvious: Milek wore No. 78 at Brophy Prep High, a Trojans’ offensive number currently available. Did you know that other Brophy Prep High notables include Trent Murphy, Isaiah Oliver, Shawn Swayda,  J.J. Jansen, Bob Kohrs (football), Mark Alarie (basketball), Sean O’Hair, Ted Purdy (golf), John Simons (Olympics) Richard Mahoney (former Arizona Secretary of State)?

247 composite national ranking: 1342

Honors: 2019 PrepStar All-Western Region, Max Preps All-Arizona second team and 12News All-Area first team

Highlights: https://www.hudl.com/profile/8147960/Andrew-Milek

Chandler (Arizona) Brophy Prep offensive lineman Andrew Milek (photo above in middle) will arrive in the fall to compete for an offensive line position.

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The Obvious: A fall enrollee,the Trojans signed offensive lineman Jonah Monheim (6-5, 290) from Moorpark, Calif. (Moorpark High).

The Not So Obvious: Monheim wore No. 79 at Moorpark High, a Trojans offensive number currently available. Did you know that notable Moorpark High alum alumni include Dennis Pitta, Chastin West, Chad Hansen, Greg Estandia (football), Sunny Hale (golf), Kelli Berglund (actress)?

247 composite national ranking: 359

Honors: 2019 PrepStar All-American, Tacoma News Tribune Western 100, Los Angeles Daily News All-Area first team and All-Camino League Co-Offensive Lineman of the Year

Highlights: https://www.hudl.com/profile/1860178/Jonah-Monheim

Former Trojans All-Pac-12 offensive tackle Austin Jackson (photo above) has left early for the NFL draft, so it gives arriving freshmen offensive tackles like Jonah Monheim a chance to compete for the starting spot in August training camp.

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The Obvious: An early spring enrollee,the Trojans signed defensive lineman Kobe Pepe (6-1, 295) from Long Beach, Calif. (St. John Bosco HS).

The Not So Obvious: Pepe wore No. 44 at St John Bosco High, a Trojans’ defensive number currently worn by OLB Tuasivi Nomura. Did you know that other St. John Bosco High notables include Chad Allen (actor), Patrick Cowan, Tim DeRuyter, Todd Husak, Leon McFadden, Josh Rosen (football), Nomar Garciaparra, Dennis Lamp (baseball)?

247 composite national ranking: 599

Honors: 2019 PrepStar All-American, Tacoma News Tribune Western 100, All-CIF Division 1 Defensive Player of the Year, Los Angeles Times All-Area first team, Southern California News Group All-Region, Long Beach Press Telegram Dream Team first team and All-Trinity League Most Valuable Defensive Lineman

Highlights: https://www.hudl.com/profile/7763085/Kobe-Pepe   

Bellflower (Calif.) St. John Bosco High defensive tackle Kobe Pepe (photo above), the Trinity League Defensive Lineman of the Year, enrolled early at USC to compete in spring ball for playing time but now has to wait to find out who his new defensive line coach will be.

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The Obvious: A fall enrollee,the Trojans signed defensive lineman Jamar Sekona (6-2, 300) from Fairfax, Calif. (Marin Catholic HS).

The Not So Obvious: Sekona wore No. 77 at Marin Catholic High, a Trojans’ defensive number currently available. Did you know that other notable Marin Catholic High alumni include Dan Fouts, Jared Goff, Travis LaBoy, Nick Rolovich (football), John Boccabella (baseball), Brooke Smith (basketball), Robert Hass (former USC Poet Laurette)?

247 composite national ranking: 527

Honors: 2019 PrepStar All-American, Tacoma News Tribune Western 100 and All-Marin County Athletic League Player of the Year and Lineman of the Year

Highlights: https://www.hudl.com/profile/9530128/Jamar-Sekona

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The Obvious: A fall enrollee,the Trojans signed offensive lineman Caadyn Stephen (6-5, 285) from Camas, Washington (Camas HS).

The Not So Obvious: Stephen wore No. 77 at Camus High, a Trojans’ offensive number currently worn by OL Jason Rodriguez. Did you know that other notable Camus High alumni include Taylor Williams (baseball), Greg Biffle (stock car racing), Michael Barratt (astronaut), Jimmie Rodgers (singer)?

247 composite ranking: 770

Honors: 2019 PrepStar All-Western Region and Tacoma News Tribune Northwest Nuggets Best of the Rest

Highlights: https://www.hudl.com/profile/7757966/Caadyn-Stephen  

Camas (Wash.) High freshman offensive lineman Caadyn Stephen (photo above on left) is one of three offensive linemen from out of state.

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The Obvious: A fall enrollee,the Trojans signed defensive lineman Tuli Tuipulotu (6-3, 265) from Gardena, Calif. (Lawndale High).

The Not So Obvious: Tuipulotu wore No. 44 at Lawndale High, a Trojans’ defensive number currently worn by OLB Tuasivi Nomura. Did you know that other prominent Lawndale alumni include Mike Battle, Fred Dryer (football), Chimezie Metu (basketball), Tracy Jones (baseball), Terry Vance (AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame)?

247 composite national ranking: 388

Honors: 2019 Tacoma News Tribune Western 100, All-CIF Division 3 and South Bay Daily Breeze All-South Bay first team

Highlights: https://www.hudl.com/profile/10103713/Tuli-Tuipulotu

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The Obvious: A fall enrollee,the Trojans signed tight end Jack Yary (6-6, 250) from Murrieta, Calif. (Murrieta Valley High).

The Not So Obvious: Yary wore No. 7 at Murrieta High, a Trojans’ offensive number currently worn by tailback Stephen Carr. Did you know that other prominent Murrieta High alumni include Keith Berry (martial arts), Jorge Cordova (football), Lindsay Davenport (tennis), Richie Fowler (golf), Tyler Wade and Patrick Wisdom (baseball)?

247 composite national ranking: 448

Honors: 2019 Tacoma News Tribune Western 100 and Riverside Press-Enterprise All-Area second team

Highlights: https://www.hudl.com/profile/8192290/Jack-Yary  

Murrieta (Calif.) Valley High tight end Jack Yary (photo above), son of legendary Trojans All-America offensive tackle Ron Yary, is considered an exceptional blocker and pass receiver.

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The Obvious: And finally, there has been a lot of comments and concern over the USC recruiting Class of 2020.

The Not So Obvious: As in any recruiting class – even classes acknowledged as a Top 5 or Top 10 class – the truth in advertising will be how the new recruits perform on the field once they don their cardinal and gold uniforms. Only then will we all know what kind of class this was.



Greg Katz
Author
Greg Katz

Now in his 58th season of either writing, broadcasting, or just plain watching USC football, WeAreSC columnist Greg Katz began his affiliation with the website back in 2001, introducing his well-received O/NSO (The Obvious/The Not So Obvious) column and later adding his respected IMHO Sunday opinion and tidbits column. Greg, a former ESPN.com college football staff writer covering USC, is also a member of the Football Writer's Association of America. He is also known in Southern California as a professional public address announcer, having called the the 1996 Rose Bowl Game between USC and Northwestern. Greg also holds a master's degree in athletic administration and was a former varsity high school coach of 27 years.


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