Marqise Lee will probably decide whether to make himself available for the NFL draft or return to USC about a week after the Trojans play in the Las Vegas Bowl, the junior receiver said Sunday.
USC plays Fresno State on Saturday at Sam Boyd Stadium.
“Probably the week after that Saturday, I’ll probably decide what I’m going to do,” he said.
Lee, who won the 2012 Biletnikoff Award, is expected to turn pro despite being slowed and sidelined this season because of injuries.
But Lee said he and his family would wait until after the bowl game to meet with new Coach Steve Sarkisian and discuss the future.
“Right now, you’ve still got a game going on,” he said. “Thinking about that can affect the way I play. ... I try not to think about it as much. Just go through this last little game not worrying about it because I am trying to have a great last game.”
In 2012, the Trojans ended a disappointing season with a loss to Georgia Tech in the Sun Bowl. Lee caught six passes for 41 yards in the 21-7 defeat.
The Trojans’ mood is different going into the Las Vegas Bowl, Lee said.
“Last year we expected to go far,” he said. “We didn’t. So at the end of the day people weren’t pleased with practicing for a typical bowl game like that.”
On Sunday, Lee was among the USC players who posed for photos with two Las Vegas showgirls after practice.
“I enjoyed that,” he said.
No regrets for Redd
Senior tailback Silas Redd is not expected to play Saturday because of a right knee injury.
“I’m not one to sulk or be discouraged,” he said of not being able to finish his college career in the game.
Redd said he would not take time to reflect on the journey that took him from Penn State to USC until after the bowl game. But he said he has no regrets.
He is focused on rehabilitation and enjoying time with teammates before beginning preparations for the NFL draft.
Last month, Redd also became the father of a son, Nico.
“He’s a complete blessing,” Redd said. “My pride and joy.”
Tight end Xavier Grimble, who is from Las Vegas, said he would act as a “tour guide and chaperon” for teammates in his hometown.
“I’ll be making sure our guys are not going crazy,” he said. “But we’ve got a good group of guys, so we’ll be all right.”
Grimble’s advice to teammates?
“Stay safe,” he said. “Have fun, but just be careful and don’t get into too much trouble like everybody else likes to.”
USC and Fresno State each were allotted 11,000 tickets for the Las Vegas Bowl. USC had sold about 5,000, Fresno State 7,000, said John Saccenti, associate executive director of the Las Vegas Bowl. The game will be televised on ABC for the first time since 2001, when Utah defeated USC, 10-6, on Christmas Day. “Shockingly enough, that game ended up being probably one of the most boring games we’ve ever had,” Saccenti said. “We don’t expect that to be the case this year. We expect a few more points to be put on the board.”