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January 31, 2008
Long Beach Poly Prospects to Announce
Thursday night, Long Beach Poly will give birth to a new breed of college football stars.
The CIF Southern Section Division-I Champions have three players making their college decisions tonight. Vaughn Telemaque and Jurrell Casey will each announce their commitments on regional television at 10:30 p.m. PST.
Telemaque, who will choose among Oregon, Miami and USC, is the highest rated prospect of the three. With nine interceptions as a senior, the 6-foot-2, 190-pound safety made a huge jump up the rankings after garnering scholarship offers from Michigan, North Carolina, Rutgers and Oregon over the summer.
Telemaque didn't earn a scholarship offer from USC until the fourth game of the season, which is when he grabbed three interceptions in the first quarter against Carson. While Telemaque named Oregon as his leader just weeks ago, rumors have surfaced that the Ducks class of 2008 no longer has any vacancies.
The Trojans have been labeled a favorite because of geography, but just weeks ago, Telemaque discussed his doubts on making an impact as a true freshman at USC.
"A lot of these guys going in the first-round of the draft get noticed because they've been playing since they were freshman," said Telemaque. "They get that experience and grow with the team. It's a big deal to perform your first year, so that's what I really have to look at with USC.
"Knowing that they have all these good players, what are the chances that I get the opportunity to play as a freshman? Will I get an opportunity to prove to the coaches that I belong out there on the field?"
If playing time is an issue, and scholarship offers are scarce in Eugene, Miami's dark horse maybe riding into Southern California tonight. That would turn the Trojans' interest to Celina (Texas) safety D'Anton Lynn.
Lynn, who actually obtained a scholarship offer from USC before Telemaque, is currently committed to Penn State. But if Telemaque goes elsewhere, the Trojans will likely set up an official visit with Lynn this week.
Four-star defensive tackle, Jurrell Casey, has been less coy about his interest in USC. Once reported as a verbal commitment, Casey denied such claims and took several officials visits. Oregon and Ole Miss have trailed USC for Casey's commitment for most of the year. With the loss of Sedrick Ellis to graduation, the Trojans can't afford to have that change tonight.
At 6-foot, 280-pounds, Casey is California's most underrated prospect. A two-time all-state selection as both an offensive guard and defensive tackle, he dominated the interior line with 134 tackles and seven sacks as a senior.
Correction: Herman Davidson is scheduled to announce his commitment on signing day.
For more on these announcements, stay tuned to USCFootball.com and Rivals.com.