Offensive lineman Liam Douglas ’18 committed to play football for the University of Southern California on June 19, signing to the Trojans just hours after he was offered. Douglass is the second Harvard-Westlake student to ever receive a scholarship to USC for football.
“The other offers I’ve received are really great football programs and great academic schools, but I just felt that I would be most comfortable at USC and playing at USC,” Douglas said. “They have a great coaching staff over there and since I stepped on that campus for the first time, it’s just where I felt the most comfortable and most at home.”
Despite having played in only 11 games over one season of high school football, Douglass received offers from Arizona, Colorado, Colorado State, Kansas, Hawaii, Utah State, Ohio State, California and
Washington State. Scout.com ranks Douglass as No. 58 nationally among Offensive Tackles and No. 10 among Offensive Tackles on the West Coast.
Since committing to USC, Douglass has stuck to his six meal, 4,500 calories a day diet and reached out to other 2018 USC commits.
As of now, high school football is still a priority for Douglass. This season, he will not only play offensive tackle but running back as well.
“At the end of the day, most teams with kids can’t get a 280 pound running back,” head coach Scot Ruggles said. “Most kids that big aren’t that athletic, so [Douglas] is going to have two jerseys on game day and he will play a multitude of positions. It was with our scheme offensively when you can play around with that and have a kid that big, that tough, that obviously helps this guy.”
Ruggles said he was not surprised that Douglas received the offers as quickly as he did, citing ‘toughness, athleticism, desire and size’ as key components of Douglas’ game.
“[The] best part of my job is playing a small role in helping kids chase and achieve their dreams,” Ruggles said.
Regardless of his success in high school football, Douglas said his parents were initially hesitant. Douglas played flag football until he was 13 but said his parents were staunchly opposed to his playing tackle football.
“[My parents] were worried about injuries in general, not just head injuries but injuries to all of the body,” Douglas said. “I don’t worry about it. I think if you think about all that stuff during football you shouldn’t be playing football. I just go out and play as fast and as hard as I can.”
Despite his parents’ original hesitance for Douglas to play tackle football, he said they seem to have come around.
“I think before all of this recruitment stuff they were just really happy I could go out and play football,” Douglass said. “I think they were just happy they were able to help me fulfill what I wanted to do. I was a little worried about my dad and whether he would come to games, but by week one he was in the middle of the stands, in the front row wearing a Harvard-Westlake football t-shirt and cheering, so it was awesome to see how their mindset really changed once I started playing football.”