|No_Sprints congrat's to you.||lotterypick|
Oct 29, 2003 4:18 PM
|As was first reported by Jamie Newberg of TheInsiders.com, Loveland (Colo.) offensive lineman Jeff Byers has committed to USC. Here's a look at why Byers chose the Trojans.
Jeff Byers, the nation's No. 1 prospect, has finally made his decision. The center from Loveland High School in Colorado is headed to the PAC 10 to play for Southern Cal.
For Jeff Byers, it's an exciting time. The senior center from Ft. Collins (Col.) Loveland High School has been courted by just about every college football program from coast to coast. Byers, 6-foot-4 and 285 pounds, is TheInsiders.com's top rated-prospect and No. 1 offensive linemen. Just before the season, Byers narrowed his college choices to eight teams Iowa, Notre Dame, Southern Cal, Ohio State, Texas, Nebraska, Colorado and UCLA. Over the next several weeks, he took official visits to Ohio State, Iowa, Texas, USC and Notre Dame.
Now the nation's No. 1 prospect has made his decision USC.
"USC has great people and it's the place where I felt the most comfortable around the players," Byers told TheInsiders.com. "They all work so hard and they work together. They play the game of football with such a great intensity. Pete Carroll has shown that he's a great coach. I also like Tim Davis (Southern Cal Offensive Line Coach). He's my kind of guy.
"I just have a feeling about USC. The chemistry is there and that's so important to me. They also have great academics and that's important to me too."
Byers is yet another great get by Coach Carroll and his staff. Last season, they put together a phenomenal recruiting class with headliners from top to bottom. After Signing Day, quarterback John David Booty decided to forgo his senior year of high school to play at Southern Cal this season. Booty would have been one of the top prospects in America among the Class of 2004. Now it's Byers and this could be just the beginning of another bonanza of a recruiting class for the Trojans.
"Honestly, all the schools I was looking at were real close to putting it all together" Byers explained. "It wasn't just Southern Cal. All the teams made it very difficult. But one thing about USC is that they play freshmen. Over the last two years they have played 24 freshmen. All I want is a chance to compete and USC has shown that they are not afraid to play the best man."
Chances are Byers will be a center for USC. But he also can play guard and even offensive tackle. This season, he is strictly playing center and defensive tackle for Loveland. They are 8-1 and Byers has been just as dominant on defense, where he has recorded 141 tackles, 39 tackles for a loss and six sacks.
"We are doing so well, especially on defense," he said. "We are playing good football. Now that I have made the decision, it will help this team. It takes pressure off of me and it takes pressure off of us. Now we have no more distractions and we can focus on the playoffs and playing hard."
Oct 30, 2003 8:10 AM
|After Signing Day, quarterback John David Booty decided to forgo his senior year of high school to play at Southern Cal this season
Did I read that correctly? He dropped out of high school to go to college??? Has that ever been done before?
Oct 30, 2003 8:30 AM
|Booty went to an evangelical Christian school in Louisiana, where his father was an Asst. Coach and teacher of some kind. His father had a spiritual falling out with the head of the school, and was canned. Booty had fulfilled all of the graduation requirements, except a 4th year of english, which he took at a community college the summer after his junior year. He thus graduated from high school a year early, and went to USC a year early, where he was expected to redshirt, but might see some playing time.
This sort of thing is more frequent than you might expect. My sister left high school after her sophmore year and enrolled in college that fall. It doesn't happen so often in NCAA athletics, because athletes are not often academically qualified to do this.
Oct 30, 2003 9:33 AM
|Booty has already seen playing time. Mostly during our big blowouts of teams like ND. I'm not sure about the exact requirements for redshirting but I believe he is still eligible to be redshirted. Could be wrong.
I used to be an avid recruiting follower, not so much anymore.