USC is supersizing their list of McDonald's All-Americans
Last year it was O.J. Mayo. This year it was DeMar DeRozan. Next year, it's Renardo Sidney. All three are presumed one-and-dones, though DeRozan has yet to announce his NBA intentions and Sidney has yet to even pass the SAT.
It's a faster pace for marquee recruits than USC has ever seen before. Dwight Anderson and Leonel Marquetti were the Trojans' first McDonald's All-American recruits in 1978, though Marquetti later transferred. Anthony Pendleton came in 1986, followed by Rodrick Rhodes, who transferred from Kentucky, in 1992 and Avondre Jones in 1993. Crosstown rival UCLA has been home to 28 of the young stars in the same period.
More impressive than USC's current run in men's recruiting is the roster that Coach Mark Trakh is building on the women's side. He lost Morghan Medlock (2006) when she transferred to Baylor, but look at how many of the game's participants will be on next year's team: Jacki Gemelos (2006), Stefanie Gilbreath (2007), Briana Gilbreath (2008), Ashley Corral (2008), Christina Marinacci (2009) and Monique Oliver (2009).
That's right -- even USC's sixth man (er, woman) will be a McDonald's All-American. The Women of Troy have been slowed by injuries for the past couple seasons, but expectations should be very high for 2009-10.
Sidney, Marinacci and Oliver will take the court for the annual exhibition on April 1 in Miami. The boys' game will air on ESPN at 5 p.m. (PDT) and the girls' on ESPNU at 2:30 p.m.
-- Adam Rose
Photo: Fairfax High's Renardo Sidney pulls in a rebound during a game against Westchester. He plans on going to USC, with a stopover in Miami for the the McDonald's All-American game. Credit: Christine Cotter/Los Angeles Times.