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Recruiting Notebook: Class of 2019 early thoughts

Now that the national all-star games are done, and with only a few remaining spots for the Trojans to fill for the class of 2018, we will use this notebook to give an overview of our thoughts on some of the top prospects we’re looking forward to seeing for the class of 2019.

Garry Paskwietz and Randy Taylor from National Preps gave a review of their top 2019 prospects in the WeAreSC Recruiting Podcast.


“I always like to take one QB in each class so here are some names I’m looking at on the west coast. I like Ryan Hilinski down at Orange Lutheran, a guy like Joe Yellin at Mission Viejo is a tough, competitive kid. Hank Bachmeier of course, Jacob Conover from Arizona. There’s a lot of guys out there and I’m interested to see who starts to emerge.” RT

Running back

Jordan Wilmore (Lawndale) 5-8, 200
#5 all-purpose back

Sean Dollars (Mater Dei) 5-10, 185
#1 all-purpose back

“Wilmore is my favorite back I’ve seen for this class. He’s a running back, not an athlete playing running back. And he will deliver the blow on contact. I love the physical aspect of his game. He’s on the shorter side but at 200 pounds he brings plenty of punch.” GP

“Dollars is a really good player too. This group of backs isn’t really big, I don’t see that runaway big guy yet but there are some good backs here. A couple others I like are Jamal Bell from Paraclete, he’s really explosive, and Austin Jones from Bishop O-Dowd.” RT

Wide receiver

Bru McCoy (Mater Dei) 6-3, 210
#1 ranked athlete, #12 player overall

Joe Ngata (Folsom) 6-3, 195
#15 ranked athlete

Mycah Pittman (Calabasas) 6-0, 185
#11 wide receiver

“For the 2nd year in a row it could be a Monarch at the top of the WR priority list. Bru is a completely different player than Amon-Ra, think more of a Michael Pittman-type frame and skill set. And I really like Ngata, he’s a big guy who plays physical but he can run too.” GP

“I love Mycah Pittman’s instincts and feel for the game, and I’ve felt that way since he was a freshman. A couple others to mention are Kyle Ford, Kyle Smith and Braedin Huffman. There are a lot of really talented wide receivers at the top of the list.” RT

Tight end

Ethan Rae (Orange Lutheran), Jude Wolfe (Bosco) 6-5, 240
Rae ranked #6 TE, Wolfe is #15 ranked TE

“I don’t really have a preference for which one ends up at SC, I just want to see a tight end in this size range who can have an impact as a blocker” – GP

“Ethan Rae is what you look for in an athletic big tight end, and he’s looked like this for a long time. Jude was a guy you saw early in his career standing on the sidelines waiting his turn and now he’s come into his own and become that guy. DeLaSalle also has a guy in Isaiah Foskey.” RT

Offensive line

Sean Rhyan (San Juan Hills) 6-6, 305
#13 ranked offensive tackle

Jonah Tauanu’u (Narbonne) 6-5, 285
#8 ranked offensive tackle

“USC needs tackles and there are two really good ones in Rhyan and Jonah (photo above). What I like about Rhyan’s game is how aggressive he is, he puts his man on his back a lot. And Jonah has just been a rock for the last two years on the Narbonne line and they’ve had a lot of success, he’s a pretty polished guy.” GP

“Ryhan is still developing and I think his upside is really, really good. I think both of them could play guard too. A big tackle prospect I like is up at Rainer Beach, Washington in Nathaniel Kalepo, he’s a commit to UW right now.” – RT

Defensive line

Kayvon Thibodeaux (Oaks Christian) 6-5, 235
#1 ranked player in nation overall, #1 ranked WDE

Matthew Pola-Mao (Mountain Pointe, AZ) 6-1, 300
#5 ranked defensive tackle

Faatui Tuitele (St. Louis HS, HI) 6-4, 295
#2 ranked defensive tackle

Jacob Bandes (Pittsburgh) 6-2, 275

#6 ranked defensive tackle

“Man-child is definitely a term that comes to mind when you see Kayvon on the field, he’s just built different than other high school kids.” – GP

“Kayvon looks like an NFL guy, you hate to put that on a kid but he looks like it. I love Bandes and he still has room to put weight on. Pola-Mao is a classic 6-1 inside guy.” – RT


Henry To’oto’o (DeLaSalle) 6-2, 210
#2 ranked outside linebacker

DeGabriel Floyd (Golden Valley) 6-3, 220
#3 ranked outside linebacker

Mase Funa (Mater Dei) 6-3, 240
#10 ranked outside linebacker

Maninoa Tufono (Punahou) 6-3, 220
#4 inside linebacker

“This is another terrific linebacker group coming off a great year at the position for the 2018 class. I like the way Tufono moves for a guy his size, and I can say that about Floyd too.” – GP

“Funa is one of those guys who can grow and really set the edge for you. This is a good group. I would add Ralen Goforth too, his brother is across town but he’s a nice athlete to watch” – RT

Defensive back

Chris Steele (Bosco) 6-0, 175
#2 ranked cornerback

Jeremiah Criddle (Mater Dei) 6-1, 185
#10 ranked corner

“You always talk about the need for corners and two of the best are Steele and Criddell. I love how aggressive Steele is with his coverage, it’s the style of play you like to see in a corner.” – GP

“I agree, Steele can be that lockdown corner. I think Criddell is more of a safety and he’s a good one. A couple other kids I would want to mention are Isaiah Rutherford from the Jesuit in Sacramento, and Jalen Martin at Roosevelt, he is another Chase Williams-type at 6-2 with long arms and he’s athletic.” – RT

Garry Paskwietz

A 1988 graduate of USC with a degree in Sports Information. Worked in sports marketing for LA Lakers and Miller Brewing Company. Began covering the Trojans in 1996 with the Trojan Football Fax. Founded WeAreSC in November 1998 with stints at Scout and ESPN. Emmy-winner while covering high school football at Fox Sports West.

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