Former USC commit Mique Juarez has eliminated the Trojans from contention for his signature, naming UCLA and Ole Miss as his final two at the Army All-American Bowl.
The five-star linebacker from Torrance had pledged to USC last January but his commitment wavered and he de-committed shortly after Steve Sarkisian was fired in October.
Despite the de-commitment, Juarez kept USC among his top schools, though sentiment was that the Trojans were a long shot. His decision to narrow his choices down to two solidifies that suspicion.
Expected as it was, the 6-foot-2, 231 pound linebacker eliminating USC is a blow to the Trojans recruiting for the 2016 class. He is considered the No. 2 outside linebacker prospect in the country and the No 16 player overall, according to the 247Sports composite rankings.
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Most importantly, there is a very good chance Juarez will end up with USC’s rival UCLA when all is said and done, giving the Bruins an important recruiting win over the Trojans in this class.
On the plus side, USC recently received the commitment of five-star defensive end Oluwole Betiku, who is expected to enroll early this January.
With Betiku in the fold, the Trojans have 15 commits for 2016 with five spots remaining after transfers blue shirt enrollees from last year are counted. Rivals rates USC class as the No. 18 group in the country. Last year the Trojans pulled in the nation’s top recruiting class.