Ultra-talented transfer WR for USC football now missing from roster

Oct 31, 2020; Stillwater, Oklahoma, USA;  Jake Smith, USC Football
Oct 31, 2020; Stillwater, Oklahoma, USA; Jake Smith, USC Football / Brett Rojo-USA TODAY Sports

2021 USC football transfer wide receiver Jake Smith is no longer on the Trojans' roster.

Smith was a highly-touted recruit back in his high school days at Notre Dame Prep in Scottsdale, AZ. He was a four star guy, and the No. 8 receiver in the country (all recruiting rankings and ratings in article are as of 247Sports). The No. 49 overall recruit in the entire country, everyone wanted him. The only recruit in Arizona who was better than him for that class (2019) was Spencer Rattler who should've just headed to Oklahoma the year earlier (he clearly needed the extra year of preparation). Smith would have been the No. 1 recruit in the state of Arizona.

In Smith's first year in Texas, he caught six touchdown passes. Only receiving for 25 catches and 274 yards, however, the goal was for him to step up in those departments. It didn't happen the next year, as he only caught 23 passes for 294 yards and three scores. Talent wasn't the issue, however, and many people (rightfully) wrote if off due to poor coaching at Texas.

Jake Smith then transferred to the USC football program, where he was rightfully expected to flourish.

Jake Smith got hurt last year, however, and missed the entire season for USC. He was expected by many to bounce back. There would be a lot of receivers to compete for targets with, but he'd certainly have the talent to hang with them and try to earn a high spot on the depth chart. Unfortunately, though, it looks like he's no longer with the team now.

Here's my projection for the rest of the Y-WR depth chart for SC after the subtraction of Smith (I expected Smith to be the No. 2 receiver on the pecking order for the Y-WR spot):

1. Gary Bryant Jr.

2. John Jackson III

3. C.J. Williams

dark. Next. USC Football Spring Ball Depth Chart

So Jackson will now have an opportunity to really make his mark in spring football. He'll be a senior in 2022, and will have more of an opportunity to grab playing time now after playing in just three games in his two years on the field for SC. He caught four balls for 39 yards in that time.