Comings and goings at USC, UCLA

December, 16, 2011
12/16/11
4:05
PM ET
Some links of interest from LA.

First, USC defensive end Nick Perry has opted to enter the NFL draft, joining offensive tackle Matt Kalil as Trojans who are bypassing their senior seasons.

Neither was a surprise. And odds are that quarterback Matt Barkley and safety T.J. McDonald will join them. But who knows? Every year someone opts to stay who was expected to go.

The deadline to declare is Jan. 15; the deadline to pull out of the draft once declared is Jan. 18.

On the other side of town, the news is good at UCLA: ESPN.com West Coast recruiting expert Greg Biggins reports that Jim Mora's new staff hires are striking a positive note in recruiting. Insider

Mora hired three coaches -- Adrian Klemm (from SMU), Steve Broussard (Arizona State) and Demetrice Martin (Washington) -- who rank among the nation's best recruiters. That is something the Bruins have lacked in recent years.

Former coach Rick Neuheisel was actually the Bruins' best recruiter the last four years, but the head coach can only do so much of the leg work and there was a sizeable drop after him and the rest of the staff. Former coach Karl Dorrell had Jon Embree and Eric Bieniemy, both of whom were excellent recruiters, but there has always been the feeling that UCLA went after players it thought it could get the easiest, rather than working to land the top, blue chip athletes. It's always important to know who you can and can not get, but it's also good to have some grinders on the staff who will outwork everyone else and won't take no for an answer.


Biggins doesn't just write this as an opinion, by the way. He talked to a number of recruits, including some committed to other Pac-12 schools, who are now looking at the Bruins.

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