John Plattenburg transferred from Corona (Calif.) Centennial High School to Houston (Texas) Lamar High School last summer, but he made a much more difficult switch Monday morning when he committed to USC after giving his pledge to UCLA.
"It was tough because I love those guys at UCLA," said Plattenburg. "But you know, things change. I've always grown up a USC fan, and my mom went there so my family is all USC.
"When Coach [Steve Sarkisian] and Coach [Keith] Heyward ended up taking over from Washington, I just knew in my heart that USC would be the best for for me."
The planets aligned for Plattenburg just weeks after UCLA beat USC in the Coliseum. While the Bruins got the best of the Trojans off the field, Plattenburg was looking at more than just one game of football.
"Win or lose, SC is SC," said Plattenburg. "USC has a great tradition… great tradition. they produced so many great players at such a high level. And those coaches they've brought down from Washington can help produce even more great players.
"They have the ability to produce great players and move them on to the next level. USC has always had that place in my heart. The tradition and everything that goes with it."
Plattenburg's relationship started in Washington, when Sarkisian and Heyward were coaching the Huskies. That relationship never died regardless of his commitment to UCLA or the move from Seattle to Los Angeles for the coaches.
"They knew I was committed, and they respected that, but they never stopped recruiting me," said Plattenburg. "I discussed my interest in USC with UCLA on my home visits, and then the offer came from USC when Coach Sark was hired.
"Washington as a school just wasn't the fit for me. I liked the coaches, but Washington as a school wasn't the right for me. At the time, UCLA was the better fit. But then all in one week, Coach O was let go and the Washington staff moved down to SC.
"Then they reached out to me for a home visit and that's when things started to change."
Plattenburg now resides in Houston, but having commit to UCLA and now USC, his longing for Southern California is rather obvious.
"Man, the weather is definitely something else" laughed Plattenburg. "It's like 20-degrees freezing here in Houston. In Houston Texas it's freezing. I just came back from the Offense-Defense Bowl in Florida, so it's different.
"But having grown up an SC fan and having family out there always made that a good choice. I looked at other schools like Wisconsin and even Oregon, so it wasn't all about whether. It was about fit and the school I felt the best with."
Plattenburg has taken numerous unofficial visits to USC, but his official visit to the school will happen Jan. 17.
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