Which USC football players might choose to opt-out of the 2020 season to focus on the NFL draft?
Could USC football have players decide not to play the abbreviated 2020 schedule in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic?
Signs from other college football programs and the NFL are raising the possibility.
On Wednesday, Virginia Tech’s Colin Farley announced his decision to skip his redshirt junior season. He plans to instead focus on preparing for the 2021 NFL Draft.
Farley was an All-ACC first-team selection at cornerback in 2019. His exceptional campaign had him projected as a potential first-round selection. That high draft grade certainly gave the Hokie star some freedom to take the chance at not adding more to his tape.
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What about USC’s squad? Who might fit a similar profile as Farley?
While Farley’s concerns over health and safety could prompt any Trojan to make the deeply personal choice to sit out this season, NFL aspirations are more simple to project:
USC football stars who could opt out: Amon-Ra St. Brown
The first Trojan who comes to mind has to be Amon-Ra St. Brown.
The wide receiver was only an All-Pac-12 honorable mention in 2019, but he produced 77 receptions and 1,042 yards despite Michael Pittman serving as USC’s No. 1 pass-catching weapon.
As a former five-star recruit, St. Brown has all the physical tools NFL teams might want and a work ethic that can’t be denied.
Why should he stay?
St. Brown’s NFL prospects are closer to the fringe of the first round, so skipping the season might prevent him from truly propelling himself into the conversation as one of the top WRs on the board. He’s driven enough to make the negative impact minimal, but a season as USC’s primary playmaker could do wonders for his stock.