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June 30, 2007It's not everyday you see an offensive tackle with a physique that resembles a Mr. Universe contestant, but USC's latest commit Tyron Smith certainly falls under that category.
From Moreno Valley (Calif.), Smith has been no stranger to the recruiting camp circuit over the past few seasons. In back to back years, Smith has taken home MVP honors from both NIKE Camps he's attended, and quickly left his signature as one of the most dominant offensive lineman in recent history.
On June 22 at USC's Rising Star Camp, Smith put on a clinic once again, blocking every defensive lineman he went up against in an effort that would make the Great Wall of China jealous.
Smith stands 6-foot-6, and weighs 265-pound, a bit undersized for an offensive lineman right now, it should be noted that Smith is only 16 years old although he sure doesn't look it. He carries an incredibly muscular build, and arms which have a wingspan reminiscent of a California condor, Smith is essentially a blueprint for building on offensive tackle.
Smith may have the build and the athletic ability of a skill position player, but what sets him apart from others is his tireless work ethic and desire to be the best.
Tyron Smith is USC's third five star commitment for the 2008 class. Signing three five star players is quite impressive for any year, but amazingly enough he's only USC's eighth commitment for 2008.
Smith will join two other offensive linemen who are currently committed to USC; five star tackle Matt Kalil, and four star tackle Matt Meyer. Meyer did receive reps at guard at the Rising Star Camp, so he may have a future at that position.
USC is still looking to bring in a few more offensive linemen for the 2008 class. Guards should be the focus and the main out of state target still appears to be Daniel Campbell from Aldine (TX).
In California, Khaled Holmes from Mater Dei and Max Tuioti-Mariner from Corona appear to be the primary targets, although Mariner's knee injury this spring needs further evaluation. Armond Armstead from Elk Grove (Calif.) recently received a scholarship offer from the Trojans, although he's being recruited for defense first.
Instead of just quoting one expert opinion on Smith, we snaged several interesting comments made after this year's Los Angeles NIKE Camp.
"He's better than last year," NIKE Camp offensive line coordinator Pete Brock said. "It's funny, he has more of a body of a tight end, but he has all the strength and power of an offensive lineman.
"I think his athletic ability makes him special. He's body is going to allow him to put some meat on his frame. He's going to get better and better. He's a tremendous athlete."
Offensive line coach Marty Spaulding has been a part of the NIKE Camp tour for the last five year and he's never seen a better offensive lineman.
"He was great as an underclassman, but he's even better now," Spaulding said. "We've traveled all over the country for the NIKE Camps, and I haven't seen a better lineman. He's that good. He's amazing.
"If you could make a blueprint of what an offensive lineman should look like and play like, it's him."
Greg Biggins, director of NIKE Camp personnel, sees Smith as a dominant left tackle at USC.
"I just think with Tyron's athleticism and reach, it's hard not to put him at tackle," said Biggins. "There's just no way to speed rush the guy.
"UCLA got to USC last year with smaller speed rush ends off the edge. You could put a safety out there to come off the edge against Tyron and he won't blink."
Stay tuned to USCFootball.com throughout the year for more updates on Tyron Smith.