Class of 2014 running back Racean Thomas (Oxford, Ala./Oxford) received quite the treat on Halloween.
The ESPN Watch List member picked up a verbal offer from USC running backs coach Kennedy Polamalu, adding to a list that already included SEC powers Alabama, Florida and LSU. Thomas was close to committing recently, but with more schools entering the fold, that's no longer the case.
"This USC offer means a lot," the 5-foot-11, 182-pound Thomas said. "It's just another school that I can consider going to, really. It feels good to have another opportunity. It's not a big deal in my decision because in my mind, I was thinking I was going to wait it out, anyway. Earlier this season, I was feeling like I was ready to commit but as of right now, I'm probably going to wait it out."
The Trojans, though, had been in the picture the last few months.
"Really, I was kind of studying them and watching their games on TV before they even offered me," he said. "They were one of my top teams that hadn't offered. They've got a real balanced offense. It's not just straight-up run. It's not just straight up pass. It's balanced and that's good. That's something I like."
USC undoubtedly has ground to make up in his recruitment. Thomas has never been to Los Angeles and has been close to committing before. He hopes to take a trip west next summer during the camp circuit.
"Coach Polamalu has been telling me I'll be the No. 1 back in my class soon," Thomas said. "He's really trying to get me down there. I've thought about (leaving the state). Me and my dad talked about it this past summer before we started the season. He just said he wants me to go somewhere close, not necessarily in-state, but somewhere close so he'll be able to make it to my games. But I think he's OK with me going anywhere. He's fine with wherever I go, but he would prefer that I stay close. ... I'm not really trying to put a timetable on it because I might end up like some of these other guys that decommit. I'll go with my heart and go where I feel is the right place for me."