Cal beat USC on the football field last season, but the Trojans got a measure of revenge on Monday when Golden Bears recruit Amos Talalele flipped his commitment and agreed to play for new coach Lincoln Riley.
Talalele announced the news via his Twitter account, calling it "the hardest decision I ever had to make."
Talalele, a 6-foot-5, 330-pound three-star prospect from Santa Clara, is listed in recruiting rankings as a defensive lineman. But Cal was targeting him as an offensive lineman and that’s where the Trojans envision using him.
Riley, who came to USC from Oklahoma this offseason, now has lured current or prospective players from four different Pac-12 rivals to USC.
Previously, the Trojans secured running back Austin Jones from Stanford, running back Travis Dye from Oregon and cornerback Mekhi Blackmon and wide receiver Brenden Rice from Colorado.
Talalele gave a commitment to Cal barely two weeks ago, picking the Bears over offers from Washington, Utah and USC. “I was raised in the Bay and I'm proud to stay,” he said via Twitter at the time. "I'm beyond happy to announce I will be committing to the University of California, Berkeley. Blessed to be a Cal Bear!”
But Talalele made a recruiting visit last weekend to USC, which had continued to pursue him after his commitment to Cal. By Monday, he announced his change of heart.
Talalele’s defection leaves Cal with just two committed recruits to its class of 2023: four-star defensive back RJ Jones of Bellflower and three-star linebacker Cade Uluave of Herriman, Utah.
He is the second player to decommit from Cal, following edge rusher Carson Mott of Simi Valley, who withdrew his commitment last month and has not yet revealed his college choice.
Follow Jeff Faraudo of Cal Sports Report on Twitter: @jefffaraudo