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Pac-12 Recruiting Snapshot

There haven’t been the typical spring and summer recruiting events for this recruiting class, but the calendar continues to march toward signing day. Here, we take a look at the progress being made by Pac-12 programs, as the conference overall is progressing on the recruiting trail at its typically deliberate pace compared to others, with two programs way out front.

The circumstances surrounding this recruiting period have led to an unusually high number of verbal commitments to this point, as nearly every team in the top 30 of the class recruiting rankings holds double-digit commitments. But in the Pac-12, just two programs have more than seven commitments, with Oregon and USC way out ahead of the pack.

1. USC – 14 commitments

Highest-ranked commitment: QB Jake Garcia (La Habra, Calif./La Habra)

The 4-star quarterback is the nation’s No. 33 overall prospect.

Position of strength: Quarterback

Garcia and fellow four-star quarterback Miller Moss (Mission Hills, Calif./Alemany) will likely be the most talented 1-2 punch at the position in any class this cycle. They are both top-10 quarterbacks nationally.

Key target remaining: DE Korey Foreman (Corona, Calif./Centennial)

The nation’s No. 1 overall recruit committed to Clemson earlier this year but has since backed off. There have been top-10 national defensive standouts in Southern California the past two classes, but Oregon grabbed both defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux and linebacker Justin Flowe. USC can’t afford to let Foreman get away.

2. Oregon – 11 commitments

Highest-ranked commitment: OT Bram Walden (Scottsdale, Ariz./Saguaro)

Walden is the nation’s No. 85 overall prospect and was a USC target along the offensive line.

Position of strength: Offensive line

Walden is joined by fellow Arizona four-star tackle Jonah Miller (Tucson, Ariz./Sahuaro) and four-star center Jackson Light (Draper, Utah/Corner Canyon).

Key recruit remaining: OT Kingsley Suamataia (Orem, Utah/Orem)

Continuing the offensive line theme for the Ducks. There are a couple of elite wide receivers Oregon is in on (top California receiver Troy Franklin is one), but landing Suamataia to go along with the commits in hand already would give the Ducks the best offensive line class the conference.

3. Cal – 7 commitments

Highest-ranked commitment: TE Jermaine Terry (Richmond, Calif./Kennedy)

Cal’s sneaky-good recruiting class is led by Terry, a tremendous tight end who grabbed offers from some of the elite national programs before electing to stay close to home.

Position of strength: Pass catchers

Cal doesn’t have commitments from more than one player at any position, but with Terry and wide receiver Mavin Anderson (Mission Viejo, Calif./Mission Viejo) as four-star prospects at the top of the class, Cal quarterbacks will have a couple strong options.

Key recruit remaining: DE Derek Wilkins (Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif./Santa Margarita)

Cal is going to create issues for teams with its defense under head coach Justin Wilcox. Wilkins is a talented and versatile defensive end with offers from Stanford, UCLA and USC.

4. Washington – 7 commitments

Highest-ranked commitment: QB Sam Huard (Burien, Wash./Kennedy Catholic)

Position of strength: Quarterback

Huard is a top-10 prospect in the country and the nation’s No. 1 pocket passer. Washington’s quarterback depth chart has undergone some shuffling recently, but Huard will be a threat to start quickly once he arrives.

Key recruit remaining: DE J.T. Tuimoloau (Sammamish, Wash./Eastside Catholic)

Washington is home to three top-10 prospects in the 2021 recruiting class. With Huard committed, the Huskies now turn their attention to Tuimoloau and wide receiver Emeka Egbuka (Steilacoom, Wash./Steilacoom). USC is in the mix for Tuimoloau, but Ohio State is a major threat for both.

5. UCLA – 5 commitments

Highest-ranked commitment: ATH Devin Kirkwood (Gardena, Calif./Serra)

The four-star Kirkwood is a terrific cornerback at 6-foot-3, 175 pounds. It’ll be interesting to see if he remains at cornerback or transitions to safety at the next level.

Position of strength: Pass rush

Defensive end Tyler Kiehne (Los Lunas, NM/Los Lunas) had nine sacks as a junior, while outside linebacker Devin Aupiu (Oxnard, Calif./Pacifica) had 11 last year.

Key recruit remaining: LB Ethan Calvert (Westlake Village, Calif./Oaks Christian)

UCLA needs an infusion of talent at every position, so why not start with a top-10 in-state prospect and the nation’s No. 3 inside linebacker, who also happens to have an older brother on the UCLA roster? The issue for UCLA is that USC has made Calvert a priority target and appears to be doing well.

No. 6 Washington State – 6 commitments

Highest-ranked commitment: DE Xavier Young (Tallahassee, Fla./Amos P. Godby)

The Cougars went into Florida and have a commitment from the 6-foot-4, 240-pound three-star end.

Position of strength: Defensive end

Washington State has a talented pair of ends, in Young and in-state prospect Andrew Edson (Snoqualmie, Wash./ Mount Si).

Key recruit remaining: DT Jacob Schuster (Olympia, Wash./Tumwater)

In a great year for talent in the state, the Cougars need to grab more than a few of the top 20 prospects. Edson is one, while Schuster is the No. 12 prospect in Washington, with offers from Stanford, Washington and others.

No. 7 Arizona State – 7 commitments

Highest-ranked commitment: LB Jaydon Williams (Dallas/South Oak Cliff)

Williams was a big get as Arizona State looks to continue having success recruiting Texas.

Position of strength: Tight end

The only position where Arizona State has multiple commitments is at tight end, as three-star recruits Garrett Gillette (Mukwonago, Wis./Mukwonago) and Kamron Beachem (Oceanside, Calif./Oceanside) are headed to Arizona State.

Key recruit remaining: CB Jaylin Davies (Santa Ana, Calif./Mater Dei)

Former USC safety and current Arizona State defensive backs coach Chris Hawkins is looking to continue the Sun Devils’ success in the state of California, and pulling a 4-star prospect–and nation’s No. 12 cornerback–out of Mater Dei would be a big statement.

No. 8 Oregon State – 6 commitments

Highest-ranked commitment: LB Easton Mascarenas (Mission Viejo, Calif./Mission Viejo)

The Beavers are starting to turn the corner on the field and adding a really solid linebacker in Mascarenas is a good way to keep that momentum moving forward.

Position of strength: Linebacker

Mascarenas is joined at the position by fellow three-star prospect Semisi Saluni (Walnut Creek, Calif./Northgate)

Key recruit remaining: OT Thomas Cole (San Luis Obispo, Calif./San Luis Obispo)

The Beavers have been able to rely on a very good running game under head coach Jonathan Smith, so continuing to add talent along the offensive line is a must. Cole has been one of California’s big risers this offseason.

No. 9 Stanford – 4 commitments

Highest-ranked commitment: QB Ari Patu (Folsom, Calif./Folsom)

Patu is more of a long-term prospect for the Cardinal, but he’s a terrific athlete and should develop nicely at Stanford.

Position of strength: Defensive back

Outside of Patu, every Stanford commitment plays defensive back, with cornerback Jimmy Wyrick (Dallas/South Oak Cliff) and safeties Josh Moore (Atlanta/Marist School) and Caleb Ellis (Frisco, Texas/Independence)–all three-star prospects.

Key recruit remaining: DE Aaron Armitage (Blairstown, NJ/Blair Academy)

Stanford is used to being able to go across the country to get four-star defensive players like Armitage, a 6-foot-4, 242-pound defensive end with a strong list of offers. The issue for the Cardinal here is the USC also covets Armitage and is doing well with him.

No. 10 Arizona – 3 commitments

Highest-ranked commitment: OLB Jackson Bailey (Red Oak, Texas/Red Oak)

The three-star linebacker had 60 tackles and two interceptions as a junior.

Position of strength: Linebacker

Two of Arizona’s three commitments are at linebacker, with Bailey joined by another out-of-state three-star prospect in Kolbe Cage (New Orleans/Holy Cross). Arizona needs more than a few linebackers in this class, as depth is short and the Wildcats will be moving from a 3-3-5 to a 3-4 defense.

Key recruit remaining: RB Stevie Rocker (Tucson, Ariz./Canyon Del Oro)

Forget the fact that Rocker is a talented 6-foot, 185-pound back. Arizona has to figure out how to recruit and sign in-state players. In the 2019 class, the top in-state player signed by the Wildcats was ranked No. 30. In 2020, the Wildcats signed the state’s No. 20 prospect. In 2021, Arizona doesn’t yet have a commitment from an in-state prospect. Rocker isn’t just an in-state prospect, he’s right in Arizona’s backyard in Tucson.

No. 11 Colorado – 3 commitments

Highest-ranked commitment: LB Zephaniah Maea (Henderson, Nev./Liberty)

Position of strength: Linebacker

It’s tough to pick a clear spot here, as Colorado’s three commitments are at three different positions.

Key recruit remaining: QB Drew Carter (Portland, Ore./Tigard)

The new staff at Colorado is looking to sign a quarterback in this class and Carter looks to be the target.

No. 12 Utah – 3 commitments

Highest-ranked commitment: QB Peter Costelli (Mission Viejo, Calif./Mission Viejo)

Costelli is a major threat with his legs as one of the fastest quarterbacks in the country. He’ll need to continue developing as a pure quarterback, but there is a lot to like about the combination of his arm and legs.

Position of strength: Quarterback

Utah is another program with three commitments at three different positions.

Key recruit remaining: DE Logan Fano (Spanish Fork, Utah/Timpview)

It all starts up front for the “Sack Lake City” Utes, and Utah has done well with seemingly undersized defensive ends with the ability to get after the quarterback. Fano checks in at 6-foot-4, 230 pounds and had eight sacks as a junior. Michigan, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Washington have all offered, but the Utes will try to keep him home.

Erik McKinney

Erik McKinney began writing for WeAreSC in 2004, during his junior year at USC, covering the Trojans football team and recruiting. He then moved on to ESPN.com in 2011, where he served as the West Region recruiting reporter and then the Pac-12 recruiting reporter. He took over as publisher of WeAreSC in January, 2019.

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