Cordell Broadus has gotten used to all of the attention. He is the 27th-ranked wide receiver in the recruiting class of 2015, per Rivals.com, a 6-foot-3, 185-pound prospect with loads of potential. On National Signing Day he will select his college destination between Arizona State, UCLA and USC.
But there’s another big reason Broadus is famous: His father is Calvin Broadus. You might know him as Snoop Dogg.
“It’s been hectic at times,” Cordell told SI.com. “I’m still trying my hardest to break out of that shadow and earn a name for myself.”
On Wednesday Broadus will achieve his goal of committing to play big-time college football, the culmination of a long journey for both father and son. The most recent chapter took place in Las Vegas, where Snoop moved his family largely so his son could play at nearby Bishop Gorman (Nev.) High as a senior.
The Gaels are a national power and won their sixth straight state title this fall. Snoop wanted to provide Cordell with the best possible exposure for gaining a college scholarship. Cordell’s senior year at Gorman is chronicled in ESPN’s series Snoop & Son.
“You see celebrity kids that are wild, they’re out there -- there’s something that’s always connected to a celebrity’s kid,” said Snoop, who spoke to a crowd at a viewing of Snoop & Son in Atlanta last month. “So it’s hard trying to keep a kid tuned in and not jump into the fast lane. Bishop Gorman has so many people that are protecting you, watching you, supervising you. It’s a family bond.”
Cordell was initially reluctant to leave Southern California, but the move paid off. Gorman beat Reed (Nev.) High 70-28 on Dec. 6 to win the state championship and close out the year No. 1 in MaxPreps’s national Top 25 composite rankings. Broadus was one of the team’s primary weapons, hauling in 39 catches for 602 yards with 11 touchdowns.
Spending his senior year at Gorman helped give Broadus a taste of big-time football. He played alongside a number of teammates who are also bound for major-college programs. Tight end Alize Jones and defensive back Nicco Fertitta are Notre Dame commits, while lineman Jordan Ober is pledged to Nebraska.
“I’ve learned so much within this year and I’ve matured so much,” Broadus said. “The great coaches, the great faculty at the school -- it’s just a great atmosphere for a young student-athlete.”
But his prep career has seen its share of critics. Many wonder if the hype surrounding the four-star prospect is a product of his father’s celebrity. Those concerns run parallel with Cordell’s own admission that he didn’t always love football. In fact, Snoop paid his son $3,000 over two years to start playing the sport at age 6.
Football was always a major part of Snoop’s life, and in 2005 he founded the Snoop Youth Football League, a non-profit organization that gives inner-city kids the chance to play football and cheer. Cordell began his career in his father’s league; in turn, Snoop pushed his son to utilize his talents.
“That was the potential that I saw in him,” Snoop said. “That’s why I coach him so hard, because he fell in love with [football]. When I loved it, it was different. Now that you love it, you’ve got to love it that much more because so many people want your position and want what you want.”
Snoop is Cordell’s biggest fan, but also his most vocal critic. On Snoop & Son the elder Broadus openly calls out his son's mistakes during and after Gorman games. “It’s good that he does that,” Cordell said. “When the media does it, it’s just second nature to me, and I don’t have a bad reaction to it like some athletes do. I just look at that as motivation.”
Cordell has narrowed his 15 scholarship offers down to three finalists, and says he can see a future at Arizona State, UCLA or USC. The Trojans currently have the nation’s No. 2 overall class, according to Rivals.com, which includes four-star quarterbacks Ricky Town and Sam Darnold. The Bruins, meanwhile, have signed five-star passer Josh Rosen, the country’s top-rated quarterback recruit.
But there’s another wrinkle in Cordell’s decision: His father is a diehard USC fan. While Snoop isn’t preventing Cordell from choosing his own path -- even if it leads to crosstown rival UCLA -- he has openly campaigned for his son to sign with USC. But that hasn’t mattered to Cordell.
“That plays zero into my mind,” Cordell said. “He can be a fan of any school. That’s nice, but at the end of the day, I’m the one who has to go through the workouts. I have to do the homework. All that is on me, so it’s my decision and it’s my life."
He added: “But I’m going to listen to his input on certain situations because he’s my father. I’m still 17, so I’m going to need that help from someone who has more experience than I do.”
Cordell told SI.com that one school is the frontrunner, but he wants the world to wait to hear his decision on Signing Day. He’ll pick his destination at 2:30 p.m. ET on ESPNU.
So, how will Snoop react if Cordell isn’t USC-bound?
“If he picks another university, I’m going to have on that university’s sweatshirt,” Snoop said. “But I’ll have on some SC drawers.”