Rodrick Pleasant of Gardena Serra commits to Oregon.


One of the best defensive back recruits in the nation — and a face for multi-sport success in high school — is heading out of Southern California.

Gardena Serra senior Rodrick Pleasant, who’s made waves throughout his high school career as a lockdown corner and a track standout, announced his commitment to Oregon on Wednesday morning in front of a crowd of friends and family in the school gym. Serra’s 2021 Division 1-A championship trophy was displayed at the table where Pleasant made his announcement.

Pleasant’s drive was clear the moment he came to Serra in the spring of his freshman season, coach Scott Altenberg said. He’s excelled as a corner and occasional spot receiver through three seasons, despite injury issues his junior season, and led Serra with four interceptions this past year.

But his most impressive achievement comes on the track, where he broke the California state wind-legal record for the 100-meter dash with a time of 10.14 seconds his junior year. Pleasant will look to both play football and track at Oregon, according to Altenberg — a rare commitment in the time of youth specialization.

A few minutes before he announced his decision, the Serra students serenaded Pleasant with a rendition of “Happy Birthday.”

“Not only the fastest, but one of the best boys in America,” Serra President John Morgan announced.

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