At one time, USC's tight end unit was absolutely stacked with several 5-star prospects. The only question was how was the coaching staff going to find playing time for all of these studs?
Well, those days are long gone now and, all of a sudden, the Trojans find themselves lacking depth at the position due to the removal of one player for legal issues (Junior Pomee) and the loss of another (Christian Thomas) to a transfer.
This leaves USC with three scholarship tight ends, and while Xavier Grimble, Randall Telfer and Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick are all outstanding players, the Trojans are just an injury away from having their playbook severely restricted.
Further complicating matters is the fact that Lane Kiffin did not sign a tight end in last year's class which means that securing at least one in this year's class is paramount.
This slideshow will look at some of the prospects the Trojans have offered this year and provide some analysis as to what they have to offer
So without further delay, here are the tight ends USC has in their cross hairs.
USC has had their eye on 247sports.com 4-star tight end Tyler Luatua for quite some time now.
Luatua, who plies his trade for La Mirada High School (La Mirada, Calif.), is a 6'4", 240-pound blocking machine who also possesses good speed to go along with a very soft pair of hands.
The good news for USC fans is that they are considered to be a front runner for young Tyler's services.
Depending on which recruiting service you subscribe to, Bingham High School (South Jordan, Utah) tight end Dalton Schultz is either a 3-star prospect (247sports.com) or the best player in the nation at his position (Scout.com).
Regardless of who is making the determination, what is certain is that Schultz is a very good player.
At 6'5", 230 pounds, Schultz has the frame to muscle his way open and the hands to complete the play, and while he will need to get bigger at the next level, he has the frame to do so.
Holding more than a dozen offers from some of the finest programs in the nation, at this point it looks like Stanford has the inside track for his services.
One of the fastest rising players on the West Coast is St. Bonaventure High School's (Ventura, Calif.) 247sports.com 4-star tight end, Bryce Dixon.
Dixon is a 6'4", 220-pound athlete who combines excellent quickness with good power to form an impressive package with unlimited potential.
He will need to get bigger at the next level but has the frame and desire to do so, and in a good college conditioning program, he should have no problems accomplishing this.
Dixon has a bevy of offers at his disposal, and while USC is still in the game for his services, UCLA appears to be the team to beat.
Hailing from Atlantic High School in Delray Beach, Fla., Adly Enoicy is an intriguing prospect who has a ton of upside.
Rated a 3-star player by both 247sports.com and Scout.com, Enoicy is a talented pass-catcher who still has a bit of work to do on his blocking abilities, which probably has more to do with his size (6'4", 215 pounds) than a lack of ability.
Enoicy will benefit from a college weight training program where he will pack on more bulk, improving his overall game.
Holding offers from more than a dozen programs including Florida and Florida State, Enoicy claims his interest is medium in all of his suitors.
Another under the radar tight end hails from Pope John XXIII High School (Sparta, N.J.) and his name is Ryan Izzo.
Izzo is a 6'6", 220-pound athlete who combines good size with great body control and hands to form a very intriguing package that should excel at the next level.
Holding almost 20 offers including those from powers such as Florida State and Wisconsin, Izzo's interest in all of them is listed as "medium," according to Scout.com.
In what can only be described as a "nightmare scenario," USC could find itself down to one scholarship tight end should both Xavier Grimble and Randall Telfer decide to make themselves available for the NFL draft after this year.
While this may not be likely, it is indeed possible and what's more, it is probable that at least one of these two makes the decision to go pro after 2013.
If this occurs, USC will be down to two experienced tight ends for 2014 and this will affect both rotations and limit certain formations such as double tight end sets.
All of these factors have turned tight end into a position of need for the Trojans in this class, and the only question is whether they take one or two in the 2014 class.
Oh, and one more... who will sign on the dotted line?