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Purdue commit Karlaftis: Udeze and I speak regularly

Purdue commit Karlaftis: Udeze and I speak regularly

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George Karlaftis is a universally recognized four-star defensive end. He also happens to live down the street from Purdue University.

That’s good news for the Boilermakers. There aren’t many highly ranked football recruits in West Lafayette, Ind. And that coaching staff took advantage of their proximity.

The 6-foot-4, 260-pounder committed to Purdue in October of 2017. Now as a high school senior, he still plans to sign with the Boilermakers in December. He plans to be a two-sport athlete (football and track and field) at Purdue and he doesn’t have any plans for future official visits.

Many believe he’s an absolute lock to attend college at home. USC’s coaching staff just doesn’t feel the same way. They offered Karlaftis a scholarship after he made his pledge to Purdue. They also continue to pursue him.

“Coach (Kenechi) Udeze and I talk on a weekly basis,” Karlaftis told usc247.com. “Right now it’s not as much because I’m really busy with the season. But we usually talk once a week.”

Karlaftis says Udeze has made it known he’s a huge priority for USC’s 2019 class. Karlaftis has also shown great interest in USC.

He took an official visit to the campus on June 22.

“It was a pretty cool place, I liked it,” Karlaftis said when asked what he thought of his visit to USC. “The coaching staff is great.”

He also isn’t any less enamored with the Trojans after a rough start.

“No,” Karlaftis said when asked if USC’s struggles change his feelings on them. “In general, I don’t care where they’re at right now. A little bit. But it’s more about how they’re going to be when I get there as a junior and a sophomore and stuff. The coaching relationship is really important too.”

But when asked what it would take for USC to sign him in December, Karlaftis’ loyalty to his hometown college shows through.

“If anything goes wrong with Purdue, a coaching change at Purdue, pretty much,” Karlaftis said when asked what would have to happen for him to end up committed to USC.

That might be possible. Purdue has started the season 0-3. That includes an ugly loss to MAC team Eastern Michigan. But Purdue’s head coach, Jeff Brohm, is viewed a potential star in the business. He was hired prior to the 2017 season and took the Boilermakers to a bowl game right away. Before his time at Purdue, he was at Western Kentucky. The Hilltoppers enjoyed unprecedented success with their program, including a 10 win season and a 12 win season.

So while a disastrous season for Purdue football might be possible, it might also take a lot for the school to uproot its football coaching staff.

Karlaftis also clarified that if something happened at Purdue, he would open up his recruitment entirely, not just to USC. Miami, Michigan and Notre Dame would among the schools to watch at that point.

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