Top recruits raising expectations for USC football

Top recruits raising expectations for USC football


Top recruits raising expectations for USC football
Caleb Williams threw for 1,912 yards and 21 touchdowns in 10 games for Oklahoma after winning the starting quarterback job last season. (Amanda Chou | Daily Trojan file photo)

As the 2022 football season approaches, so does the beginning of the Lincoln Riley era at USC. The new Head Coach has attracted a swarm of commits hoping to dominate the Pac-12 after experiencing a 3-6 conference finish last season.

USC’s overall commits are the highest ranked in the Pac-12 for the 2022 season, with an average player score of 90.94 out of 100. The Trojans have 30 new commits, consisting of 20 transfers and 10 recruits. Although the program trails behind Colorado, Arizona and Washington State with the most commits in the conference (31), USC has secured some of the top players in the nation.

The program has two 5-star commits, the most of any Pac-12 squad. Cornerback recruit Domani Jackson was the fifth top recruit in the nation, and quarterback transfer Caleb Williams ranked seventh in the nation’s top recruits in 2021. Oregon, ranked second in the Pac-12 overall, is the only other team in the conference welcoming a 5 -star commit this fall.

USC is expecting a talented group of freshman recruits — four of which, Jackson, Raleek Brown, Zion Branch and CJ Williams, are ranked among the top 100 college football recruits for 2022. Each recruit who signed a letter of intent ranked within the top 100 recruits in their state.

USC’s 20 transfer commits are the most of any other Pac-12 program this season. 247Sports ranks USC’s transfer lineup number one overall in college football, with an average player score of 90.29 out of 100. Trailing behind USC is Ole Miss with 89.50 and LSU with 88.27.

Three transfers, Williams, Latrell McCutchin and Mario Williams, are transferring from Riley’s previous program at Oklahoma. Seven other transfers are from Pac-12 squads, including Arizona State, Colorado, Oregon, Stanford, Utah and Washington.

Riley spoke with Trojans Live in April regarding his first season at USC, saying that “this will be the most unique roster in the history of USC football.”

“It’s been a great transition,” Riley said. “The vibe of the team is really good.”

Riley described the type of player the Trojans look for as someone who embraces the USC football culture. An ideal recruit must work towards achieving individual goals, but they must understand achieving team goals is of utmost importance.

“We’ve brought in guys who don’t only see the opportunity here for themselves, but wanted to be a part of the change and wanted to help lead the charge, and that’s been very positive,” Riley said.

The 2022 Trojans’ first Pac-12 matchup is Sept. 10 at Stanford.

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