USC football declared Quarterback U for putting pro-ready passers into the NFL

USC football is QBU thanks to gunslingers like Sam Darnold. (Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
USC football is QBU thanks to gunslingers like Sam Darnold. (Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

USC football was declared Quarterback U by because of its NFL-ready passers.

If you ever hear the myth about USC football quarterbacks busting in the NFL, now you have a handy-dandy resource to counter with.

Thanks to the’s new “Pipelines to the Pros” series, the Trojans can now officially claim the title of Quarterback U.

USC topped the list of programs that have produced “the most impactful pro players early in their careers,” beating out Oklahoma, Florida State, Oregon and more.

Why is USC football QBU? Because they’ve developed pro-ready players.

The criteria used is slightly unique. They were concerned with how “ready” quarterbacks were for the pros coming out of college, so total career accolades aren’t factored in. Instead, they offered points for their draft tier, their rookie season accomplishments and the progress of the next four years of their career.

That’s why a quick perusal of the scoring those Aaron Rodgers at a mere 26 points while Mark Sanchez (USC’s highest point-getter) tallied 48.5. Sanchez started right away while Rodgers waited behind Brett Favre.

CHECK OUT: Breaking down USC’s QB depth chart for 2020

Of course, Rodgers’ low point total also reveals the inherent flaw in the scoring system. Whether or not Rodgers was ready is irrelevant because he happened to be picked up by a team with a Hall of Fame quarterback still on the roster.

That being said, USC’s sheer numbers put it at the top of the hill. Every single regular-starting USC quarterback this century has gone to the NFL and the vast majority of them have managed to start a few games on top of that. The list includes Carson Palmer, Matt Leinart, John David Booty, Mark Sanchez, Matt Barkley, Cody Kesser and Sam Darnold in an uninterrupted streak. And don’t forget about Matt Cassel.

If the Trojans want to keep their place, they will need Darnold to hold down the fort with a strong first five years. While Kessler and Barkley may still be kicking around the league as backups, Barkley is out of the five-year scoring window while Kessler is entering his fifth year as a free agent.

MORE: Picking USC’s Mount Rushmore of quarterbacks

Darnold is the only USC QB capable of picking up any points for the time being. With Kedon Slovis only just entering his sophomore year, there isn’t likely to be another new Trojan passer in the league for a couple of years.

Down the line, Slovis could certainly continue the strong NFL tradition for USC before the likes of Jake Garcia or Miller Moss attempt to pick up the baton.

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