Sebastian LaRue, a 4-star wide receiver/athlete from Santa Monica, CA, has decommitted from USC.
If it seems like Lane Kiffin's program has been losing as of late, it's because it's true. Not only has this year been a disappointment on the football field, but what started off as an elite recruiting year is slowly but surely falling apart before our very eyes.
Count the loss of LaRue's commitment as the latest on a growing list. He took to Twitter to announce his decision:
Decomitted from USC.— Sebastian LaRue (@SebastianLarue1) January 2, 2013
Justin Hopkins of 247Sports also reports on the decommitment:
Santa Monica (Calif.) athlete Sebastian LaRue has decommitted from USC. The 5-foot-11, 195-pound prep committed to the Trojans back in late June, but has kept an open mind with regards to visit.
Hopkins goes on to say that USC will still be considered, but LaRue has other visits scheduled in January as well:
He is expected to visit Notre Dame, Texas A&M and USC in the month of January. Washington State and Ohio State also remain in the mix for his services.
Despite his decision to open things up, the Trojans continue to be considered.
No matter how you look at it or spin it, this can't be encouraging for USC. Losing a commitment is never a good thing, but that loss is multiplied when that commitment happens to be a very good player. LaRue is ranked as the No. 10 athlete recruit in the 2013 class, according to the 247Sports composite rankings. He's 5'11'', 195 pounds and runs a 4.38 40 (via 247Sports).
Without a doubt, USC is losing a player with a ton of potential.
Positive momentum is huge in the world of college football recruiting, and right now, the Trojans don't have any. In fact, USC has actually built up a ton of negative momentum.
The Trojans just recently lost the commitment of 5-star defensive tackle Eddie Vanderdoes, and before that was another huge decommitment in 5-star safety Max Redfield. Add that on to a 21-7 loss to Georgia Tech in the Hyundai Sun Bowl, and we've got what appears to be a negative trend.
Unfortunately, there's nothing USC can do to change those results, but Kiffin and his staff can work on changing around some of that momentum.
The Trojans are still in the running with multiple highly-ranked recruits—plus the ones they lost—so the best way to turn this thing around is by getting a few recruiting wins.
4-star safety Tahaan Goodman has been connected to USC for a while now, and the Trojans are listed as the top school on his 247Sports interest list. Another interesting target for USC would be 4-star outside linebacker Quinton Powell, who has USC in his top five (via 247Sports).
As stated earlier, that's not to mention the fact that USC is still in the running for its lost commitments. Redfield has USC and Notre Dame as his final two (h/t 247Sports), and Vanderdoes will take his final visit to USC, per a report via Gerard Martinez of USCFootball.com
When all is said and done, there's no denying that losing LaRue's commitment is a big-time recruiting loss for the Trojans. There's also no denying that both USC football and its recruiting are trending in a negative direction as of late.
That said, in the world of college football recruiting, things can change in a split second, and USC's 2013 class still has the potential to get a lot better.
It's not time to panic just yet. There's still a lot of time for Kiffin and his staff to finish strong.