One of the best kept secrets this week was Trajuan Briggs’s (5-11. 192, 4.55) decision to call the USC coaching staff and verbally commit on Monday.
“I committed on Monday,” said Briggs about his decision to end the recruiting process. “Lately I’ve been talking to my family after UCLA made a visit to the school and my coach said they saw me as a strong safety. So I knew my grandpa, who likes UCLA, couldn’t get mad at me wherever I committed. He said, ‘That’s their loss.’ I’ve pretty much known where I’ve wanted to go this entire time and I just prayed about it. I figured I knew where I wanted to go and I wasn’t going to waste the time of coaches from other schools.”
It took Briggs telling USC defensive coordinator Rocky Seto a couple of times he was committing before Seto believed it. As usual, Pete Carroll was excited to learn about his seventh verbal commit of the 2010 class.
“I called Coach Seto and talked to Coach Carroll and told them I was in,” Briggs said. “Coach Carroll was really hyped and when I talked to Coach Seto and told him, I was in, he said, “Huh, what?’ And I said, ‘I’m a Trojan, I’m in.’ He asked me to say it again and asked if I was playing around and joking with him. I told him I was serious, I was a Trojan and that I committed. Everybody was excited. I was excited, the coaches were excited, my mom was excited and it was just a great day.”
Briggs’s former teammate and future Trojan, DeVon Flournoy, was also excited when he learned about the commitment. As was fellow USC 2010 running back commit DJ Morgan.
“When I got to school the next day, DeVon was really excited,” said Briggs. “He said to me, ‘Finally, you did it, finally you did it.’ Yesterday I was at a track meet and talked to DJ Morgan. He said, ‘You’re finally a part of the Trojan family.’ Malik (Jackson) was also really excited."
While UCLA may see Briggs as a future strong safety, the Trojans see him filling a void they’ve had since Lendale White departed.
“They are pretty much telling me they want me to come in an play the power back,” said Briggs about the position he’ll play at USC. “They said ever since Lendale left they haven’t really had that type of running back. They have a bunch of quick backs and quick players, but they haven’t had a back to run hard and smash defenders. And that’s how I like to play ball. They’re looking forward to me coming in as a true freshman, working hard and they want to see me playing. If that’s what a school is telling me and I already play that way, I’m loving it.”
Last year USC had quite a few verbal commits who ended up taking official visits and some ended up at other schools. Briggs was asked if his commitment to USC essentially ended the recruiting process for him.
“I’m pretty much done with the recruiting process,” Briggs said. “I’ve talked to the other coaches and they understand everything and have been very respectful. I kept it real with them and told them, ‘Once I make a commitment, I’m not going back on it.’ That’s why I didn’t commit to USC too early. I took some time to think about it, I looked at some other teams, but I knew where my heart was. Now that I’m done with the process, I’m stress free.”