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Thursday, December 26, 2013
USC recruits to watch at all-star games

By Blair Angulo

With the all-star games approaching fast, here's a look at four USC recruits to keep tabs on at each event:

Under Armour All-America Game, Thurs., Jan. 2, 1 p.m. PT, ESPN

CB Adoree' Jackson (Gardena, Calif./Serra): The five-star athlete announced on his Twitter account that he plans to name his top schools following the game. USC, which recently landed a commitment from good friend and high school teammate Jalen Greene (Gardena, Calif./Serra), would appear to be in good position to among those named. Jackson attended the Las Vegas Bowl and, though he has shown a liking for out-of-state schools, would not surprise anyone by becoming the latest Serra star to sign with the Trojans.

Juju Smith
John "JuJu" Smith, who is No. 38 in the ESPN 300, will take an official visit to USC on Jan. 17.
ATH John "JuJu" Smith (Long Beach, Calif./Poly): The two-way standout has one more official visit remaining -- USC on Jan. 17 -- and might not wait until national signing day to announce his decision. Though Alabama, Ohio State and Oregon are also in the chase, the Trojans should feel good about their chances, especially with a couple of his close friends in tow. Smith could easily thrive on both sides of the ball, so it will be interesting to track where he lines up throughout the week in practice.

CB Tony Brown (Beaumont, Texas/Ozen): The five-star prospect visited USC on the track and field side of things, so there is genuine interest in the Trojans. New head coach Steve Sarkisian has made Brown a major priority, but on the surface it appears the Trojans have a lot of ground to make up.

ATH Speedy Noil (New Orleans, La./Edna Karr): A long shot to land at USC now that Ed Orgeron is no longer on staff, Noil was the top performer among athletes at The Opening. He has had interest in the Trojans since childhood, so maybe Sarkisian and staff can convince him to at least visit Los Angeles in January.

U.S. Army All-American Bowl, Sat., Jan. 4, 10 a.m. PT, NBC

TE Bryce Dixon (Ventura, Calif./St. Bonaventure): The top tight end target on the Trojans’ board, Dixon is expected to announce his decision during the game. He has indicated he’s down to USC and UCLA after also officially visiting Arizona State and Oregon during the season. A commitment here might not be the end of the recruitment, though, as the four-star prospect still intends to visit both local schools before national signing day.

OL Damien Mama (Bellflower, Calif./St. John Bosco): Perhaps the most important recruit as far as the USC coaches are concerned, Mama helped his team to a state championship and will now turn his attention to recruiting, with USC, UCLA, BYU and Alabama making up his final four. Mama, a four-star prospect, intends to announce his decision on national signing day and still has two visit slots remaining.

OL Toa Lobendahn (La Habra, Calif./La Habra): This will be the final showcase for the four-star lineman before he enrolls at USC. Lobendahn was a standout performer the last time he was around other top-flight prospects at The Opening, so he will head into the event with plenty of confidence. Expect Lobendahn to spend plenty of time with fellow Polynesian recruits in an effort to get them to join him on campus.

OL Viane Talamaivao (Corona, Calif./Centennial): Like Lobendahn, Talamaivao has his eyes set on bolstering USC’s class by tirelessly recruiting good friends Mama and Smith. When the pads are on, the former Alabama commit is just as active and he will try to show the nation why he is highly touted.

Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl, Sun., Jan. 5, 6 p.m. PT, Fox Sports 1

WR Shay Fields Jr. (Bellflower, Calif./St. John Bosco): The three-star receiver intends to visit Cal and Colorado before signing day as he continues to keep an open mind in case something happens with USC. Communication issues have put his commitment to the Trojans in question, but this all-star game should provide Fields the opportunity to prove doubters wrong.

CB Jonathan Lockett (Santa Ana, Calif./Mater Dei): USC’s interest in the 5-foot-11 cornerback was minimal under Lane Kiffin. It ramped up a bit under Orgeron, but the arrival of Keith Heyward from Washington was music to Lockett’s ears and he committed shortly after picking up an offer. Lockett will look to close out his high school career with a good showing in front of local fans.

LB Bobby Okereke (Tustin, Calif./Foothill): The Stanford linebacker commit has been in contact with new assistant coach Johnny Nansen in recent weeks and might visit USC sometime in January. He has already been admitted to Stanford, but Okereke said he would continue to listen to what the USC staff has to say.

OL Kammy Delp (Pomona, Calif./Diamond Ranch): The lineman has a relationship with Nansen, who offered him a scholarship while at Washington, and the Trojans might get more heavily involved if spots in the class open up. Delp recently named a top five consisting of Arizona State, Oregon State, UCLA, Washington and Washington State.