Anonymous Pac-12 staffers explain why USC won the transfer portal… again
USC won the transfer portal a year ago. That’s almost an undeniable fact at this point given the turnaround Lincoln Riley engineered in Year 1. USC went from 4-8 to 11-3 while playing for a Pac-12 title and reaching the doorstep of the College Football Playoff.
But USC needs to take another step. It’ll be another big one, as the jump from “pretty darn good” to legitimate championship contender is not an easy one. Utah knows. And to that end, the Trojans have turned back to the transfer portal this offseason not to overhaul the roster, but to fill in the gaps.
And they’re widely viewed as one of the winners of the portal once again.
ESPN’s Adam Rittenberg went to the AFCA coaches convention earlier this month and asked both coaches and personnel directors to pick teams they felt made out the best in the first transfer portal window.
USC was among the eight teams selected. One Pac-12 personnel director told Rittenberg this:
“USC’s got some kids,” a Pac-12 personnel director said. “The tackle from Florida is good, Dorian Singer is really good. The fact that they got a 1,000-yard receiver who’s already proven in the conference, that’s a no-brainer. The portal is about production. It’s about taking guys who have already proven they can be productive at this level.”
The next portal window doesn’t open until May 1, and though players already in the portal can still commit to new teams between now and then, no one new can enter it at this point. The group of newcomers is largely what it is at this point.
USC so far has added a pair of offensive linemen from Florida — Michael Tarquin and Ethan White. It nabbed South Carolina running back MarShawn Lloyd and Arizona wideout Dorian Singer (mentioned above). Former All-Pac-12 tackle Jarrett Kingston is also in the boat.
Texas A&M transfer Anthony Lucas was a huge get on the defensive side. Potential is through the roof there. Former Oklahoma State linebacker Mason Cobb has already proven to be a productive player as a Power Five starter — posting 96 tackles for the Cowboys last season.
USC has also added defensive linemen Kyon Barrs (Arizona) and Jack Sullivan (Purdue). A third Arizona import, Christian Roland-Wallace, will look to have the same kind of impact as Mekhi Blackmon did at corner last season. Former Georgia State linebacker Jamil Muhammad is also interesting.
According to 247Sports, USC currently has the No. 5 transfer class in the country.