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June 14, 2012

State rankings: USC dominates California

MORE: Rankings | California | Arizona | Hawaii

There are two trends emerging in the California state rankings: USC commits dominate the upper echelon of the rankings and it's a phenomenal year for defensive backs in the West.

Only one five-star has been named in California so far with Murrieta (Calif.) Vista Murrieta safety Su'a Cravens atop the rankings. He committed to the Trojans last week.

The top four committed prospects in the state are all committed to USC in Cravens, Stockton Lincoln running back Justin Davis (No. 5), Mission Hills Bishop Alemany wide receiver Steven Mitchell (No. 8) and Rancho Cucamonga cornerback Chris Hawkins (No. 10) leading the way.

After Cravens in the rankings is Placer defensive end Eddie Vanderdoes, who recently impressed at the Eugene NIKE Camp and could push for five-star status in the coming months.

Then there is Rancho Cucamonga safety Tahaan Goodman, Mission Viejo safety Max Redfield, Davis, Concord De La Salle linebacker Michael Hutchings and Moreno Valley Rancho Verde wide receiver Demorea Stringfellow.

Three of the top five players in the state - Cravens, Goodman and Redfield - are safeties. There is an unlikely chance, but still a possibility, that the top 10 players in the state could end up at USC.

Six of the top 10 prospects in the state will be competing next week at the Rivals.com Five-Star Challenge in Atlanta, and Upland defensive end Joe Mathis is looking to earn that fifth star. Mathis was excellent at the recent Southern Cal Rivals.com Elite Showcase Powered by FBU Select and he'll look to make his mark in Atlanta.

The top-rated quarterback in the state is Los Angeles Cathedral's Hayden Rettig, who checks in at No. 11. Missing most of his junior season with a knee injury did not hurt his recruitment as Rettig recently committed to LSU.

Right behind Rettig at No. 12 is Harbor City Narbonne quarterback Troy Williams, who recently picked Washington over Arizona, UCLA, Florida and others. It is not a loaded year for quarterbacks in California since the only other one to make the top 50 is Kentfield Marin Catholic's Jared Goff, who made an early pledge to California.

[ RELATED: Find your state's ranking here]

Last recruiting cycle, offensive linemen dominated the rankings and it was arguably the best crop of players at that position in recent memory. This year, defensive backs rule the rankings and there are many good ones who could be immediate game-changers at the next level.

Cravens, Goodman, Redfield and Hawkins lead the way and then there is Fresno Central East cornerback Johnny Johnson and safety L.J. Moore, Westlake Village Westlake cornerback Dashon Hunt, Fresno Central East safety Hatari Byrd, Poway cornerback Derek Babiash, Romoland Heritage cornerback Darius Allensworth, Rancho Santa Margarita Catholic safety Connor O'Brien and Encino Crespi safety Tyler Foreman all in the top 50.

Running back is also a strong position as there are seven prospects in the top 50 led by Davis, Sherman Oaks Notre Dame's Khalfani Muhammad and Redlands recruit Craig Lee.

In the Arizona state rankings, recent Arizona State commit Chans Cox leads the way. The Lakeside Blue Ridge linebacker committed to the Sun Devils on Wednesday.

Right behind Cox is Tempe Marcos De Niza cornerback Priest Willis, followed by Phoenix Mountain Pointe offensive lineman Kenny Lacy, Phoenix Brophy Prep wide receiver Devon Allen and Chandler Hamilton cornerback Cole Luke, who recently picked up an offer from USC to go along with Texas and many others.

There are three headliner prospects in the Hawaii rankings with Honolulu Moanalua defensive tackle Scott Pagano leading the way. Pagano has more than 50 offers with LSU and Florida on top.

After Pagano is Honolulu St. Louis offensive lineman Reeve Koehler and then Stanford commit Isaac Savaiinaea, who plays at Honolulu Punahou.

The top three players in the Colorado state rankings are already committed with Parker Ponderosa offensive lineman Chris Fox heading to Michigan, Parker Chaparral tight end Mitchell Parsons pledged to Colorado and Denver Valor Christian quarterback Luke Del Rio going to Oklahoma State.

The only prospect in the top five who hasn't made a commitment yet is Dan Skipper, a 6-foot-10 offensive lineman from Arvada Ralston Valley.

Outstanding quarterbacks lead the way in the state rankings for Washington, Utah and Nevada. Five-star USC commit Max Browne is the top player in Washington, four-star Alabama pledge Cooper Bateman is tops in Utah and four-star Arizona commit Anu Solomon leads the way in Nevada.

Five-star running back Thomas Tyner and four-star offensive lineman Evan Voeller are the top two players in the Oregon state rankings. Both prospects are committed to Oregon. The next two players, offensive lineman Brayden Kearsley and defensive back Dallin Leavitt, have pledged to BYU.

Albuquerque (N.M.) La Cueva tight end Calvin Allen leads the way in the Rocky Mountain state rankings. The next three players - Alec Dhaenens, Joey Martarano and Eli McCullough - are all from Idaho and all three are committed to Boise State.

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SOUTHEAST: Another big year in Florida

SOUTHWEST: Big battle for top spot in Texas

MIDWEST: Talent continues rolling out of Ohio




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