Santa Monica High football star Sebastian LaRue verbally committed to USC and all throughout his senior Samohi season it was a foregone conclusion he would be with the Trojans in a year.
But LaRue played in a recent all-star game in Visalia and was so outstanding in practices there he drew the attention of other universities. College scouts regularly inspect players in all-star game practices.
You see, verbal commitments aren’t binding. Nothing is official until a letter of intent is signed and players aren’t allowed to sign them yet. Sometimes, players who make verbal commitments change their minds.
As a result, LaRue has decided to look into other opportunities. He plans to visit Texas A&M on January 18 and Notre Dame on January 25.
“I’m still good with USC,” said LaRue, a superb receiver who also excels as a defensive back. “I just want to give those other schools a chance to show me what they’re all about.”
Texas A&M is an especially intriguing possibility became Johnny Manziel, the first freshman ever to win the Heisman Trophy, is the quarterback. LaRue had to be flattered to hear that the team with the best college quarterback in the country wants him to be on the receiving end of Manziel’s passes.
And, of course, Notre Dame has a lot of merits too as the Irish are undefeated and will play in the national championship game Jan. 7.
Following victories in the Oaks Christian Tournament over Moorpark, Royal and Rancho Verde the Vikings lost a marquee matchup with Centennial of Corona, 80-69.
Samohi takes an 11-4 record into the start of Ocean League play. The Vikings play at Inglewood on Jan. 9 and host Culver City on Jan. 11.
The Centaurs will begin their Ocean League schedule at Morningside on Jan. 9. In a recent 82-78 loss to Hart, Culver took its undefeated opponent into overtime. Wes Dixon had 11 rebounds.
The Roadrunners defeated New Roads for the second time this season, 56-43 and improced their record to 6-5.
With victories over Mary Star and South Tahoe in the San Pedro Tournament the Gondoliers evened their record at 7-7 even though they haven’t played a home game yet.
Coach Julian Anderson’s Centaurs defeated Lake Washington of Kirkland, Washington in the Nike Tournament in Phoenix, 56-45, improving their record to 8-4. Previously Culver lost to Mountain View of Mesa in the same tournament.
Coach John Skinner has a powerhouse. The Mariners are 13-2 following a 54-52 win over Burbank in a tournament game.
After losing to Pacifica, 51-17 the Vikings’ record became 1-12.
With wins over La Reina of Thousand Oaks and New Roads Christine Smith’s team improved its record to 7-3.
Center Dai Mixon is averaging 19 points per game and guard Sarah Shermerhorn 11 for the Gondoliers, who have a 5-7 record. Venice begins Western League play Jan. 7 at Palisades.