National signing day 2012: A look at USC's recruits [video]
How do the USC Trojans feel about their 2012 college football recruiting class? CineSport's Brian Clark turns Times USC reporter Gary Klein to discuss their new recruits.
USC, in the first year of scholarship limitations because of NCAA sanctions, put a premium on quality instead of quantity, opting to fill even fewer of their already reduced maximum of 15 when targeted players signed elsewhere.
"We didn't reach," Coach Lane Kiffin said.
Instead, USC actually banked a few scholarships as it heads into a three-year period of being allowed to carry only 75 scholarship players on its roster.
By signing 11 high school players and one junior college transfer who will enroll in the fall, Kiffin can bring in three mid-year enrollees next January in addition to the 15 scholarships he will have in 2013.
Kiffin was cagey in declining to specify how many players are currently on scholarship — "I don't know," he said — but he implied that several players, including defensive lineman Armond Armstead, would not be on the fall roster. He said others, including quarterback Jesse Scroggins, were dealing with academic issues. The Trojans are thought to be at 78 scholarships, three over the number they must be at by fall.