Video: Interview with Austin Jackson
The four-star offensive lineman from North Canyon (Phoenix) can't wait to get to Southern California.
It started with Westlake (Austin, Texas)
linebacker Levi Jones
, a four-star standout from the heart of Texas, bypassing his hometown Longhorns and picking the Men of Troy.
It largely ended with two longtime pals, a Sam Darnold bomb away from the USC campus, slapping on a pair of cardinal and gold caps. Hawkins (Los Angeles)
five-star receiver Joseph Lewis
and four-star defensive back Greg Johnson
each announced their signing to the Trojans from campus on a live MaxPreps stream.
It was a tremendous National Signing Day for USC, which moved from No. 8 to No. 4 in the 247Sports Recruiting Composite Team Rankings throughout the day.
Other prominent uncommitted players to sign for coach Clay Helton and the Trojans were North Canyon (Phoenix, Ariz.)
lineman Austin Jackson
, Inderkum (Sacramento, Calif.)
tight end Joshua Falo
and Bingham (South Jordan, Utah)
nose guard Jay Tufele
Just think. Four weeks into the season, many USC backers wanted Helton's hide. After finishing the season with nine straight wins and this recruiting class, it's safe to say Helton's job is more than secure.
Jackson told MaxPreps National Football Editor Zack Poff he can't wait to block for Darnold.
"He's a great quarterback," Jackson said. "I'm going to keep him safe. I'm going to keep him healthy. … I'm stoked to be part of all of it. I'm moving into a great system." Other highlights:
* With six 5-star players each, Alabama (322.53 points) and Ohio State (310.97) are the top two teams in the recruiting standings, followed by Georgia (300.98). After USC (296.12) was Michigan (293.77), Florida State (291.56) and LSU (288.21). It was the seventh straight season Alabama has finished at the top of the recruiting standings.
* IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)
and St. Thomas Aquinas (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)
need to face off on the gridiron. The two national football powers combined to sign an almost absurd 38 college football scholarships on Wednesday.
IMG Academy, by no means a traditional high school team that lands 4- and 5-star players from throughout the country, signed 22 players at its Bradenton, Fla. campus. St. Thomas Aquinas (13-2), which came within five points of winning a mythical national title, signed 16.
Defensive end Joshua Kaindoh
and Linebacker Dylan Moses
(Alabama) are five-star recruits from IMG Academy. The top STA signees were wide receivers Trevon Grimes
(Ohio State) and Mike Harley