USC Nabs No. 1 Recruiting Class on Signing Day


USC had a second straight huge day on Signing Day, as the Trojans earned commitments on all four announcing targets, and even added another blueshirt recruit.

The result? Steve Sarkisian’s class has earned No. 1 honors by both Rivals and Scout, edging out Alabama. As for 247Sports, they have USC second, just a smidgen behind the Crimson Tide.

According to Dave Bartoo of CFB Matrix, it’s the first time that the Trojans have finished in the Top 5 of recruiting rankings since 2011, the last recruiting class before sanctions went into effect. And it’s the 15th straight year that USC has finished in the top 15, even through years in which they could only take in a maximum of 15 initial scholarship players.

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This year, despite having just 24 inital scholarships available, USC utilized advanced blueshirt scholarships to put together an extended class with 26 total players.

It’s a big boost to the Trojans’ roster situation, which has seen USC decimated by low numbers due to sanctions. With the additions, the roster looks to be back up to 80 scholarship players going into the 2015 season, not counting preferred walk-on tight end Caleb Wilson, who was rated as a three-star.

And it’s not just the quanity of players that is big for the Trojans, but the quality. USC hit on every target they sought to get since the season ended, starting with Ykili Ross and Marvell Tell at the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, and finishing with the biggest fish of them all, Iman Marshall.

At linebacker, three five-stars in Osa Masina, John Houston and Porter Gustin give USC a class that could be the most successful group of signings since 2005 when Pete Carroll wrapped up Brian Cushing, Rey Maualuga and Kaluka Maiava.

Offensively, Sarkisian’s second class is anchored by a three-headed backfield led by four-star home run hitter Ronald Jones II. The Texas native has drawn comparisons to Kansas City Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles and was the third ranked back in the 247Sports Composite.

So now comes the most important part. Putting all of this talent that Sarkisian has amassed and piecing together a championship-caliber team. The pieces are there, but development and coaching will be what ultimately determines how far these Trojans can go.

For now, the sky is the limit on a recruiting class that is the best we’ve seen in years.