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Football: Sophomore Dietrich Riley picks up first offer -- and it's from USC

June 16, 2008 | 11:51 pm

Dietrich Riley of La Canada St. Francis is one of the premier athletes in the Southland. Don't believe me? Ask USC coach Pete Carroll, who on Saturday offered Riley a scholarship.

"USC recruits athletes and that's about all I can say about Riley," said St. Francis coach Jim Bonds, who on Monday night confirmed the offer. "He's an athlete."

Riley is a special of speed and power. He finished last season with 840 rushing yards and five touchdowns on 124 carries and had 48 tackles, two sacks and one interception. He played running back, wide receiver, defensive back and even lined up at quarterback.

According to his profile on Scout, Riley is being looked at by all the big dogs-- Texas, Notre Dame, Florida and USC are all interested-- but USC is the first one to make an offer. Usually kids have offers from other schools before the Trojans get in the mix, but USC made a rare exception for the 6-foot-1, 185-pound sophomore. Riley hasn't said yes yet, but more on that later.

D_reily_5“For USC to be the first offer the kid gets, that’s saying something," Bonds said. Yeah, it says he's freaking awesome. Which, I told you so back in September.

Bonds said Riley, pictured, impressed the Trojans' coaching staff on Saturday during a camp held on the USC campus. Riley lined up at corner back and didn't allow a catch during one-on-one drills.

"He was unbelievable from what I hear," said Bonds, who was not present at the camp.

A person who was at the camp told me Riley was truly spectacular. His athleticism and strength had the coaches drooling all over the place. After the camp was over, Riley was taken to Carroll's office and received an offer. According to the fan site, Gardena JSerra wide receiver Robert Woods, a sophomore as well, also got an offer on Saturday.

"Dietrich is super excited," said Bonds about Riley, who seems to be looking to remain in the area. “He's already told me he would like to pick between USC and UCLA."

It's amazing Riley didn't say yes right on the spot, but Bonds said Riley doesn't want to rush his decision. "He doesn't want to make any decisions before, at least, this season is over."

I applaud Riley for wanting to make the best decision possible, but when was the last time SC was turned down by a kid in Southern California?

I see Cardinal and Gold in Riley's future.

-- Jaime Cardenas

-- Image by Jaime Cardenas

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