On Wednesday, the speculation was that West Mesquite (TX) wide receiver Eldridge Massington could commit to the USC Trojans as soon as he received an offer. It turned out that the 6-3, 200-pounder waited several days, but ultimately gave his pledge to Lane Kiffin's squad ($) on Friday morning, according to a report from ESPN's Damon Sayles.
Ranked as a four-star prospect by all the services, Massington had accumulated 25 offers, including one recently extended by Alabama, before ending his recruitment.
The big wideout has family in the area, but cited another major factor to Sayles:
USC is ‘Wide Receiver University' to me. They've got a pro-style offense with good quarterbacks. I feel like I can fit in there.
Massington had made similar comments when the USC offer seemed imminent earlier in the week.
Here was the assessment from this same space about Massington as a wide receiver from several days ago:
But all that discussion of the ins out and outs of his recruitment fails to mention the major reason why Massington has seen his stock improve -- speed.
Well, not just speed, but his combination of size and speed. After all, there are numerous receivers around the country about six feet tall who can fly. But not many who can fly at 6'3 and about 200 pounds. And he seems to be getting faster every week.
Actually, he is demonstrably getting faster every week. It started out with a 10.66 100m several weeks ago. Then a 10.52 100m. Now a 10.52 100m that has him qualified for the state track meet in Austin. All laser-timed. This is unreal-fast for someone his size.
Speed isn't everything for a wide receiver, however, and Massington was able to convince the Alabama coaches in attendance at a recent practice that he has the hands to turn separation into big plays, though he does still need to show that he can run a variety of routes to cement his status as one of the elite receivers in the country.
That may not happen until 7-on-7 workouts roll around this summer, but expect Massington vault up the wide receiver rankings put out by each of the major services, movement commensurate with his impressive offer list.
At this point, whether Massington can crack into the top 15 at the wide receiver position nationally is now ultimately simply an academic question that could fuel some bragging rights for USC fans. What isn't under question is that the Trojans picked up a receiver with the potential to become the next big-time deep threat for Lane Kiffin.