USC DL Tuli Tuipulotu couldn't have won better midseason awards

Tuli Tuipulotu, USC Football, USC Trojans
Tuli Tuipulotu, USC Football, USC Trojans / Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

USC Football Defensive Lineman Tuli Tuipulotu set his sights on contending for All-American honors this year. It wasn't expected of him in his third and likely final season, but it was something that was attainable when realizing how quickly he'd been developing at USC. Tuipulotu was somehow a three-star prospect (247Sports) coming out of Lawndale.

Despite that incorrect rating, he had picked up 70 tackles and 10 tackles for loss in his first two seasons at USC. It's quite impressive when considering that the first season of those two was only six games long due to the coronavirus pandemic. Keep in mind that he also had seven and a half sacks in those two seasons. Last year, he also had two PD's, two forced fumbles, and a scoop and score.

That rapid development has most certainly continued. Tuipulotu enters this bye week with 22 tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss, and seven sacks. Keep in mind that he's only played seven games...He has a forced fumble too, and already has two PD's as well. As a result, he earned three midseason All-American honors this week:

It's pretty hard to disagree with AP, ESPN, and The Athletic when Tuipulotu is leading the Power 5 in tackles for loss. He also leads the Power 5 in sacks, and not only that, but he's tied for the lead for the entire country in sacks. To do this while switching back and forth from the tackle position to the defensive end spot is even more impressive.

Tuli Tuipulotu is likely to continue wreaking havoc on opposing offensive lines for USC Football this year.

Tuli Tuipulotu is likely to represent USC Football in the first couple of rounds of the 2023 NFL Draft. With the type of season he's having, it would be hard not to select him that early. He's most certainly not undersized, at 6-4, 290 pounds. His versatility will be huge, of course, too.

His numbers have the chance to go up even more, of course, with USC playing what might be their easiest three-game stretch of the season coming up after the bye week. Next week's game is at Arizona, who is 54th in points per game. Then he has Cal and Colorado at home. Cal is tied for 99th in points per game, and Colorado is 129th (third-to-worst). All three clearly have awful offenses.

Next. Game-by-game predictions for USC in 2022. dark

Tuipulotu will likely feast, as he has all year. He's had multiple four tackle for loss games, and he's had at least one sack in each of those games. In his second one, he had three sacks. He's as elite as they come, and is clearly contending for All-American status at this point.