With a strong blue-chip ratio, USC football is one of 15 teams with national title talent.
USC football certainly isn’t in the “will” or “are likely” category of national championship contenders for 2020, but their Blue-Chip Ratio suggests they’re in a small pool of teams with the talent to get it done.
What is the Blue-Chip Ratio? It’s the brainchild of Bud Elliott of 247Sports who determined the “minimum required level of recruiting necessary to win a title” is a ratio of four- and five-star recruits above 50 percent over the last four classes.
USC fits that profile.
USC football has the blue-chippers to contend for a championship.
As Elliott determined it, the Trojans are one of 15 teams with that level of blue-chip talent. Alabama, Georgia and Ohio State lead the pack with more than 80 percent of their roster made up of five- and four-stars. Texas, LSU, Oklahoma, Clemson and Florida all fit in with 63 and 64 percent blue-chippers. Michigan, Auburn and Penn State each have 59 percent. Notre Dame checks in with 56 percent while Washington sits at 54 percent.
USC and ratio newcomer Texas A&M are both just at the threshold with 50 percent.
The current Trojan roster has 39 four- and five-stars players, according to the 247Sports composite rankings (Elliott did not credit USC with blue-chippers like Bru McCoy and Chris Steele because of their transfer status).
There are 37 three-star prospects on the roster, but 18 of those arrived with the class of 2020, severely reducing the ratio for the Trojans.
It doesn’t change what USC’s roster has at its disposal for the coming season. One could argue it looks even better for the Trojans considering three-star diamonds like Kedon Slovis and Kenan Christon bolstering the offensive attack.
Again, none of this is to say USC will contend for the national title. There’s a lot more that goes into reaching that level than just the recruits you brought on board. It would require the Trojan coaching staff to get more out of the same group of players which managed an 8-5 record last year.
As always, the good news is the new defensive staff and the promising offense under Graham Harrell have strong talent to work with.
It’s also something worth noting as USC continues to evaluate the viability of head coach Clay Helton. Athletic director Mike Bohn and the others involved in the decision-making process going forward should be aware of what the Trojans’ potential ceiling is so they can best make sense of the onfield results.