USC football isn’t resting on its laurels after finishing the season ranked No. 3 in the AP poll. Four 2017 recruits enrolled at the University this semester, preparing to join the team for spring practice.
Jack Sears may be the highestprofile Trojan recruit of the bunch. The No. 8-ranked pocket passer in this year’s class, the San Clemente native flipped his commitment from Duke to USC in November, and he will join his former high school teammate Sam Darnold under head coach Clay Helton. Sears threw for 37 touchdowns (and just six interceptions) during his senior season and led his school to the CIF State 1-A championship.
Tayler Katoa is listed as a pocket-passer quarterback on ESPN, which is a testament to his versatility. The Layton, Utah native lined up under center, linebacker and defensive end at Layton High School and is expected to play linebacker for the Trojans. During his senior season, he recorded two sacks and a fumble recovery on defense, as well as 17 touchdowns on offense (14 rushing, three passing). Katoa could be a familiar name to Pac-12 sports fans, as his older sister, Eliza, is a junior outside hitter for the Utah women’s volleyball team.
Andrew Vorhees also arrives to beef up USC’s depleted offensive line. After graduating starting tackles Zach Banner and Chad Wheeler (and losing junior guard Damien Mama to the NFL draft), the Trojans will look for the Kingsburg, Calif. player to provide some much-needed depth in the trenches. Vorhees played on both sides of the ball during high school and was named All-Central Sequoia League Lineman of the Year in his senior year.
Finally, long snapper Damon Johnson comes to USC as one of the top-ranked recruits at his position. He will have big shoes to fill, taking the place of graduating four-year starter Zach Smith. Hailing from Glendora, Calif., he did not play football last fall while attending Citrus Junior College.