St. John Bosco standout Kris Hutson explains why he backed out of USC commitment

St. John Bosco wide receiver Kris Hutson makes a leaping touchdown catch over Mater Dei cornerback Domani Jackson during the championship game at the Battle of the Beach seven-on-seven tournament in Huntington Beach on June 29.
(Shotgun Spratling / Los Angeles Times)

A year ago, wide receiver Kris Hutson committed to USC before his junior year at Bellflower St. John Bosco High. He reneged on that pledge three months later.

“It was kind of hard because me committing at such a young age at that time was weighing a lot on me, so I had to take a step back and open up my options,” Hutson said. “This whole process, you know, you only get one chance at it, so I try to take it as slowly as possible.”

The Trojans were in the middle of a 5-7 campaign and Hutson came to the conclusion he had chosen USC for what it was and not what it is now.

Hutson assessed his options throughout the rest of the St. John Bosco season, into the winter and the spring. He picked up scholarship opportunities from schools like Georgia and Penn State and told The Times in February that he “could always fall back on USC.”

But when he made the decision to commit again, Hutson chose a new suitor. The Trojans’ loss proved to be Oregon’s gain.

“That program fits me very well,” Hutson said of the Ducks. “The offense, they get the best players the ball and I look at myself as the best player on the field. You know, they give the dogs the ball and that’s what I like. I like their spread offense and they throw the ball a lot.”


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Hutson wants to enroll and make an immediate impact.

“I’m looking forward to start as a freshman, so I’m really trying to get that in,” Hutson said. “Just come in with a mentality and not fear nobody. That’s the main thing. Don’t fear nobody. Come in with a strong vibe and come in with heat.”

Oregon has told the 5-foot-10 1/2, 175-pound receiver it wants to use him in the slot primarily, but also line him up outside as a speedy deep threat.

He had 46 receptions for 844 yards and a team-high 13 touchdowns for St. John Bosco last season. Hutson showed over the weekend his crisp route running and ability to make catches in traffic, contorting his body in midair to snag balls.

He attended the Ducks’ invite-only Saturday Night Live camp held at Autzen Stadium and got to face off against some of Oregon’s top defensive back targets and commits, including Harbor City Narbonne commit Jared Greenfield and rising juniors Anthony Beavers Jr., also from Narbonne, and Jamier Johnson, from Pasadena John Muir.

Hutson also went against some out-of-state recruits that he could see in the future.

“It was great competition. I got to meet a lot of good dudes from out of state that’s coming to Oregon and I like how their style of play is, so I look forward to practicing with them guys and getting better,” Hutson said.

“I had a great time up there. Being up there is an amazing feeling, being at that stadium. Oregon, it is always tremendous up there.”

Ducks add top Southland receiver

Oregon’s receiving corps is one of its weak spots going into the 2019 season, but could be one of the strengths of its 2020 recruiting class.

Hutson gives the Ducks a shifty slot receiver who can be moved around the field to create mismatches and they picked up a different type of mismatch Monday.

After attending the Saturday Night Live camp, Calabasas High wideout Johnny Wilson committed to Oregon, choosing the Ducks over Ohio State, Texas, UCLA and Washington.

The 6-foot-6 Wilson is the No. 2 receiver in the state and the No. 43 overall prospect. His commitment bumps the Pac-12’s top class up to No. 12 nationally, per 247Sports composite rankings.

Wilson and Hutson will join their former teammates in trying to bolster the receiver room after Calabasas wideout Mycah Pittman and former St. John Bosco receiver Josh Delgado both signed with Oregon in the 2019 recruiting class.