Tate Martell Reacts to Matt Fink’s Commitment to USC


Tate Martell is high on USC and USC is high on Tate Martell. So the addition of the newest Trojan commit for 2016, 4-star quarterback Matt Fink, raised some eyebrows — Martell’s included.

RELATED: Tracking the USC Trojans’ 2016 recruiting class

“USC picked up a 2016 QB today…” Martell tweeted, though he later deleted the message.

A 5-star quarterback and one of the nation’s top dual-threat quarterbacks, Martell has been considered one of USC’s top targets for 2017. However, with two highly-rated quarterbacks signed in 2015, the position looks crowded going forward and there have been questions about whether that might dissuade top QB talent in the coming years, like Martell, from joining up.

Those concerns did not stop Steve Sarkisian and his staff from attempting to land KJ Costello, a 4-star who ultimately committed to Stanford. Nor did it hamper their pursuit of Fink, who made his commitment official today, prompting the loaded tweet from Martell.

Shortly after Martell’s tweet, incoming freshman Iman Marshall weighed in, expressing his desire to play with the Bishop Gorman product.

Of course, the social media bonanza did not end there.

Perhaps in response to criticism of his assumed concerns about a logjam at USC, Martell assured followers that competition is not his concern.

Could Martell, who has named USC as a favorite, really look elsewhere because of the Trojan’s quarterback situation?

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In 2017, when Martell will be due to sign with the school of his choice, Max Browne will have completed his final year of eligibility. That would leave USC with Ricky Town and Sam Darnold as juniors or redshirt sophomores with two years of development in the program. Assuming Fink signs in February next year, he will also have a year of experience on Martell when the starting job comes available.

If Martell has eyes on starting immediately it will be an uphill battle beating out three other presumably strong candidates. Though not outside the realm of possibility — Matt Barkley did it — the odds would be stacked against him.

However, that does not mean his career would be finished.

After all, we’re talking about one of Town, Darnold or Fink putting in a year or two of development before ascending to the starting job. There’s no reason patience couldn’t be a virtue for Martell if he lets it be.

Still, there’s no doubt Martell is the recruit to watch for the next two years.