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Get your creep on: 14-year-old QB phenom talks USC offer

David Sills

Ever-lovable USC head coach Lane Kiffin made headlines — and by “made headlines” we mean “caused sane people to throw up a little bit in their mouths” — early last year when he extended a scholarship offer to 13-year-old quarterback phenom David Sills, who promptly gave his “verbal commitment” to the Trojans — for the Class of 2015.

Now that Sills is merely four years away from being allowed to legally vote, it’s of course the logical next step in the process for him to appear on an ESPN radio program for an interview.  So he did.

During the course of the interview on ESPN Los Angeles, the eighth grader, who hails from the state of Delaware, addressed concerns some have that this may be too much too soon.  Or that Chris Hansen should be involved in the recruiting process.

“There is definitely no thought from me that it is,” the kid said. “I’m just trying to get ahead so that when I do go to USC, I’m prepared for USC and prepared for whatever comes at me. So it’s just an early start for me, and I think it’s a full advantage for me, and I think my parents and my whole family like it as well.”

Sills talked about what is was like to be on the receiving end of a dream offer from Kiffin — “I mean, that was my dream my whole life — to go to USC and play football” — and also discussed something that’s a near-daily occurrence for most strapping young men his age in this great country of ours.

“Well yesterday I went to the quarterback meetings and I was with all the quarterbacks,” Sills said matter-of-factly. “And they treated me like I was one of the quarterbacks, I wasn’t any different. It was cool being in there.

“They went through things like they were on the field; they were calling cadences like they were on the field. It was just cool when they were going over and protections being like ‘wow, this is going to be me when I get older and can go to USC.’ And then we went and watched their practice and it was really cool. It was just really cool watching all the players do their positions.”

(Before you ask, it is entirely permissible for Sills to attend QB meetings as the NCAA does not consider a football player a potential recruit until he reaches the ninth grade.)

(Excuse me for a second: Hey, NCAA, pull down your skirt; your loophole is showing.)

Somewhat surprisingly, and with major kudos to the host of the show, the elephant-sized question in the room was addressed.

If he knows if it’s a possibility that he’d not have the same offer by a different head coach other than Kiffin:

“Well I’ll always love USC. And I think Coach Kiffin is a great coach, so I think he’ll be there when I get there in five years.”

But can some coach other than Kiffin potentially rescind on the offer?

“I guess so. I’m not quite sure.”

This is where the whole creep-tastic situation could potentially spiral into ugliness and disappointment for the young man.

Of course there’s a chance that Kiffin won’t be with the Trojans in 2015, and his successor will be well within his rights to pull the offer if he so desires.  Of course there’s a chance that, even if Kiffin is still with the Trojans when 2015 rolls around, he decides to rescind the offer.  Hell, National Signing Day 2015 is nearly four years away; anything can happen between now and then.

By most media accounts, Sills is a very accomplished quarterback for someone his age and has a ton of potential.  Hopefully, the kid realizes his dream of suiting up for the Trojans upon graduation and goes on to a long and prosperous collegiate career.

If he doesn’t?  Don’t blame Kiffin or the school or anything else along those lines.  If this grand plan doesn’t come to fruition, place the blame squarely where it belongs — with the parents and with the NCAA.

And, if Sills reneges on his verbal?  Just chalk it up to Lady Karma comin’ a callin’ on Coach Kiffin.

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18 Responses to “Get your creep on: 14-year-old QB phenom talks USC offer”
  1. southernpatriots says: Mar 25, 2011 8:30 PM

    John: This indeed is creepy!

    This is exactly what some CFT bloggers, including ourselves, warned would happen–the recruitment of young teenagers to a college/university football program.

    This is hard to comment on, besides saying again that it is creepy, that the parents need to exercise much greater wisdom and parenting skills, and that the Kiffin led program needs some help also. This is strange.

  2. Slim Charles says: Mar 25, 2011 8:41 PM

    How tall is he now? That would suck if he topped out at like 5’8″

    But yeah, creepy. Hopefully his parents don’t damage his psyche too bad. Marinovich 2.0

  3. southernpatriots says: Mar 25, 2011 8:50 PM

    Slim Charles: You are so right. 5’8″ and 160? whoa! Why would parents do this to a young boy? My dad and mom encouraged my high school ball, but when it came to college choices, they rebuffed all contacts of coaches, even from our “home” of the U of Georgia, until after my high school senior season was over.

    Good allusion to Marinovich…2.0 as you stated!

  4. 78lion says: Mar 25, 2011 9:09 PM

    Shame you don’t need to pass a test to be a parent!

  5. alkscout says: Mar 25, 2011 9:59 PM

    For all you internet scouts:

    David Sills is not 5-foot-8, 160 pounds and he’s not Todd Marinovich 2.0.

    I’ve seen him play 3 times now. He’s 6-foot-1, 160 pounds in 8th grade. I watched him throw his 1st varsity touchdown pass against Interboro High School on South Avenue in Delaware County Pennsylvania this fall. I met him and his parents. He was a great kid and running to buy a couple of hot dogs after the game from the snack shack. I doubt Todd’s dad would have allowed that.

    I even brought up the Marinovich comparison to his father and he cracked up, assuring me David eats plenty of junk food. The mother was absolutely awesome and down to earth.

    The kid is completely normal. He acts like a 17-year old already in terms of media maturity, but beyond that I wouldn’t know he’s “David Sills”.

    So, for those bashing his family, they’re normal as any other I’ve dealt with and I deal with hundreds a year.

    Do I think Lane Kiffin is creepy? Yes.

  6. alkscout says: Mar 25, 2011 10:03 PM

    Also, where was this article when Skyler Mornhinweg, son of Philadelphia Eagle’s offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg committed to Stanford as a 9th grader?

    John Harbaugh is no longer there.

    Skyler still has his scholarship and is still committed.

    It’s one year difference.

    Just being fair here.

  7. bonerchamp says: Mar 25, 2011 10:18 PM

    Get your creep on? It’s not like Lane offered him a ride in a van.

  8. massappeal12345 says: Mar 25, 2011 10:42 PM

    Hey, it’s never too young to go on the payroll.

  9. thefiesty1 says: Mar 26, 2011 12:11 AM

    He may burn out and not even play thru high school and give up sports. What a farce.

  10. Slim Charles says: Mar 26, 2011 12:41 AM

    alkscout, why don’t you take a seat over here?

  11. alkscout says: Mar 26, 2011 2:59 AM

    Slim Charles,

    Already do this for a living, which is why I find many of the down thumbs funny, especially over factual responses like this one.

    Two people post from this account … myself and my sister. She only got on for the Seeburg case at Notre Dame as she was actually involved with that intimately.

    Most of the scoops I send to these guys are stuff they can’t touch because of libel issues, i.e. Cushing, although my argument with his father in the Houston Chronicle was hilarious.

    As for Sills, great kid. Unfortunately the team he plays for is under such intense investigation by the DIAA that no one will play them and they have to bring in teams from 4 hours away.

  12. alkscout says: Mar 26, 2011 3:03 AM

    Oh, was that a witty Chris Hansen line? Surprised I didn’t catch it. If it was, pretty disgusting.

  13. virusgvr says: Mar 26, 2011 10:16 AM

    Oh great!!! Here is the “next great 14 year old” that we all get to pay attention too. The football world stood by and watch Jimmy Clauson make those great passes in 9th, and then he went to college and sucked there and then be we all had to watch that train wreak of a year with Carolina.

  14. edgy says: Mar 26, 2011 10:47 AM

    I think that it’s actually a good thing for the kid because he can spend the rest of his time ENJOYING his football career instead of having to listen to pitches from other schools and his parents get 5+ years of peace and quiet instead of having to change their phone number so that recruiters will stop calling. :)

  15. piratey says: Mar 26, 2011 11:11 AM

    You think he’s not going to get phone calls from suitors? A verbal commitment is worth about as much as the paper its signed on… N0thing is final for this kid until NSD 2015

  16. gallopingfar says: Mar 27, 2011 10:49 AM

    Corrct if I’m wrong, but didn’t ESPN do a segment on Sills and his dad “buying” the private schools football program with scholarships? These scholarships and the dads’ money have financed coaches, and facilities. Noone will play them because they have stacked the deck. While it’s great that some under privileged kids will get to college through this, this is a showcase built for David Sills. What will the program at the school be like when the Sills’ vacate and move to L.A.?
    Creepy bordering on crooking the rules.

  17. southernpatriots says: Mar 27, 2011 11:02 AM

    gallopingfar: ESPN, local and regional newspapers and tv stations in Delaware have presented specials on this matter. The dad is apparently in construction and is successful. He has donated (and/or built) numerous facilities for the Christian school. The buildings, scholarships, donations, etc. from the father to the school are all welcomed by the school (of course!) and by those benefiting.

    The school can recruit from far and wide, not just in a limited district, due to its nature as a Christian independent school. The dad has truly been very generous to the school. In the process, he has built a showcase for his son. The facilities the dad built will remain long after the son leaves, but the ongoing financial support is not guaranteed. Apparently, all the dad has done is legal and permissible because of the nature of the school. This does give the school a distinct advantage over other schools near and far in Delaware.

    The young player demonstrates great talent for his age and level at this time, but that does not indicate what he will do when he reaches the collegiate level or if Kiffin or his successor would honor the offer. There are too many ifs in this picture, with so much of it, likely to negatively affect the young man.

  18. gallopingfar says: Mar 27, 2011 11:27 AM

    You’ll notice, i said nothing about David. He is doing what every kid should be doing, love and play the game. It’s the parents who try to ruin the fun.

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