football

Burks makes Pac-10 pledge

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When Southern Cal first approached Charles Burks the stipulation was that he had to be an early enrollee to get a scholarship offer so the Huntington Beach (Calif.) Edison defensive end did everything he could to figure out a way to do it.
After weeks of working with his district, Burks realized it wasn't going to be a possibility and wondered where his recruitment would go. The three-star prospect broke the bad news to USC defensive line coach Ed Orgeron but the Trojans weren't going to back away.
Orgeron called Burks after Monday's practice and told him that USC still wanted to offer. Moments later, the 6-foot-1, 230-pound prospect committed.
"I got home from practice and coach O called me and said they wanted to offer me a scholarship regardless of whether I could graduate early," Burks said. "I called my family, talked to them about it and then I called coach O back and said I'm with it 100 percent.
"It was definitely exciting because I didn't know what was going to happen. I was worried nothing was going to happen. It's definitely a relief and I'm definitely excited and happy to get an official offer."
Boise State, Stanford, Army, Duke, San Diego State, San Jose State, SMU and others offered Burks but after USC became involved it was clear the Trojans became the frontrunner.
Burks said his relationship with USC's coaches played a big role in his decision. Being a part of the Trojans' recruiting class was crucial, too.
"It's great to be able to play for those coaches," Burks said. "I fell in love with all the coaches throughout this process.
"They're all really good people and they're guys who care about you and making you the best football player you can be and putting you in positions to succeed. That definitely was one of the main things that helped me make my decision.
"Also being able to play with the kids, the amount of talent coming in this recruiting class, they're just great people so that was something that helped me with my decision, too."
Rated as the No. 32 weak-side defensive end nationally and No. 59 in the California state rankings by Rivals.com, Burks could play a number of positions at USC. The coaches have discussed a defensive end/linebacker role and possibly some time on offense as well.
"They've mentioned me playing linebacker or defensive end on third downs and even fullback," Burks said. "I'm just excited to get on the field. I'll do whatever they ask of me or whatever they want. I'm happy to be out there playing."
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