Trojans make hay in May

LOS ANGELES -- The month of May is always one of the most critical times in the recruiting calendar.

In addition to the ongoing attempt to secure verbal commitments, it's also a rare opportunity for college coaches to hit the road and gather as much information as they can about the players they are recruiting. This is not to be taken lightly, since NCAA regulations have severely limited the amount of contact a staff can have to properly research which recruits fit best in their program.

The USC staff -- which has built a reputation for being as hard-working as any staff around -- has another factor at play this year with the reduced scholarships available. The Trojans might need an extra body at a position such as defensive line or cornerback, but they won't be able to offer because a scholarship won't be available. These will be players the coaches feel are good enough to play at USC, but they will have to pass them by. That has to be hard for coaches as competitive as this group.