Coaches starting in-home visits

LOS ANGELES -- Sunday marked the first day of the fall contact period for college football coaches, and the USC staff wasted little time in hitting the road. They are arguably riding as much momentum as any program in the country, and the Trojans coaches are in the unique position of representing the only 10-win team that won't be preparing for a bowl game.

The past two years have shown that the staff knows what they are doing when it comes to evaluating and recruiting, grabbing virtually every local player they have set their sights on, as well as pulling in a handful of out-of-state stars. The fact that this will be the first year the words "bowl" and "ban" won't be uttered during a recruiting visit gives the coaches even more ammunition. Having only 15 scholarships for each of the next three cycles is something they'll use, as they'll try to create demand for the few open spots.

The prevailing themes early in this contact period have been the staff's emphasis on California and the desire to check in early with their committed players.