USC football's Pac-12 divisional opponent Arizona State is a train wreck. After claiming they "Owned the West" in a cringe-worthy recruiting campaign that never hit and then ended with the NCAA getting ready to crack down on a massive cheating scandal they're investigating at ASU, everybody's leaving the program.
Both coordinators and many assistant coaches have either resigned, been fired, or been suspended. It's not just coaches leaving, however, but players wanting to get out on the dumpster fire. 14 Sun Devils have entered the portal since season's end. That's absurd, especially when considering that there hasn't been a head coaching change.
Recently, USC took advantage of this exodus by securing a transfer from four-star transfer linebacker from ASU--Eric Gentry. Five more starters for ASU, however, have also entered the portal since then. WR Ricky Pearsall, OL Spencer Lovell, C Ezra Dotson-Oyetade, LV Bunkley-Shelton, and DL Jermayne Lole have all hit the portal.
While SC isn't considered front-runners for any of them (at least not yet) like they were with Gentry, there's potential here. While Pearsall and Lovell aren't good enough to play here, Dotson-Oyetade and Lole would fit right in at SC.
Bunkley-Shelton hasn't had a good college career, but he does have talent (four stars, No. 27 WR in 2020 class according to 247Sports) if SC is looking to add to receiver and can't land Jordan Addison or someone big like that. Dotson-Oyetade and Lole would immediately be nice pickups for SC, though.
Those two Sun Devils in the trenches would be important adds if USC football could see transfers from them.
Dotson-Oyetade is a four-star transfer, and while USC football already has one of the better centers in the country in Brett Neilon (didn't allow a single sack last year), depth is always going to be important on the offensive line.
SC returns four starters from the No. 1-rated offensive line in America last year (PFF), but they don't have a lot of depth on the line. And as for the defensive line, they need all the help they can get. USC has a stud in Tuli Tuipulotu, but they're going to want another impressive tackle.
Brandon Pili is the nose tackle, and while he's a good player, he has injury history and can't always be counted on to stay on the field 100% of the snaps. With unproven ends, they'll need to be stout on the interior. Lole was certainly a stout defender the last time he was on the field.
He missed last year due to injury, but he had 24 tackles, five tackles for loss, and a sack and a half in ASU's shortened four-game 2020 season. In 2019, he had 71 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, and six and a half sacks. He can play as long as he's on the field.
While the same can be said about multiple USC D-linemen (Pili, Nick Figeuroa), potentially indicating that SC doesn't need another defensive linemen coming off of injury; if SC can get another body while also grabbing one who has proven to be an effective player in the Pac-12--they need to do it.
And beyond the transfer aspect of this, USC needs to take advantage of the spiraling Sun Devil program on the field too. They will likely be served up a free win this upcoming season, and of course need to take advantage.
For however long this dumpster fire prevails, the Trojans need to pounce all over this Pac-12 South opponent. USC dominates the matchup 23-14 and has won five of their last seven against the Sun Devils. Now, they have a supremely easy opportunity to continue the dominance with players and coaches fleeing the program before the NCAA has even punished anyone.