Cody Kessler Appears on Cover of Sports Illustrated


USC football quarterback Cody Kessler is this week’s Sports Illustrated cover boy, featuring on the magazine’s west coast cover.

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The headline reads “The Trojans Horse” posing the annual question: Is USC back?

That’s what everyone is wondering with the Trojans possessing enough talent to make the College Football Playoff and enough question marks to fall short with another disappointing eight or nine win season.

Kessler is among the favorites for the Heisman Trophy in his senior season, but he also has yet to prove he can win the big game. He’ll have plenty of opportunities to deliver in that sense as USC’s schedule is one of the toughest in the nation. Kessler and the Trojans must navigate tough road trips to Arizona State, Notre Dame and Oregon this fall.

The first step towards answering the ultimate question came Saturday when USC dispatched Arkansas State 55-6 at the Coliseum. This weekend they’ll get to play target practice with the Idaho Vandals, who are 43-point underdogs.

Then the real work begins when Stanford comes to town looking for revenge after the Trojans won in the final minutes up north.

USC’s most recent Sports Illustrated cover player was Matt Barkley in Aug. 2012. The likes of John Wayne, who was the first Trojan football player on the cover, Frank Gifford, Anthony Davis, Marcus Allen, Rodney Peete, Matt Leinart, Carson Palmer and Reggie Bush are among the 135 Trojans who have graced the cover.

Earlier this year, Kessler featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated Kids alongside Auburn’s D’Haquille Williams, TCU’s Trevone Boykin and Ohio State’s Ezekiel Elliott. This is his first appearance on the main magazine’s cover.

UPDATE: You can read the Sports Illustrated cover story on Kessler here.

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