Make no mistake about it, the ESPN signing day coverage has been lavishing praise on USC all day long. USC started out ranked out of the top 10, behind both Washington and Oregon. By the time noon rolled around, USC had moved up to #10, with 17 signees.
At 6 am pacific time, ESPN’s top 10 were OHIO ST, GA, TEXAS, PSU, MIA, ALA, OU, CLEM, ND, AUB.
By noon, ESPN had switched to GA (totally amazing class), OHIO ST, TEXAS, PSU, CLEM, ALA (a lot of near misses), MIA, ND, OU, USC.
Rivals is even more favorable to USC, placing the Trojans at 6, behind runaway winner GA, OHIO ST, TEXAS, PSU and MIA. Trailing USC are CLEM, OU, FSU and ND.
ESPN’s Tom Luginbill has described USC as having a “huge day” and repeatedly emphasized that the Pac-12 needs USC to succeed as the conference bell cow and be the big winner because the P12’s image has slipped mightily after last season. Wonder how the rest of the Pac feels about that?
So far today, the rich have gotten richer. Just how rich USC gets will depend on whether the Trojans sign Calif CB Isaac Taylor-Stewart and Utah OL Penei Sewell. Taylor-Stewart is a strong possibility and is supposed to announce at 2:15, while Sewell, a 2 pm announcement, is viewed as more likely to sign with ORE or ALA.
Update – Sewell signed with ORE.
Update 2 – Taylor-Stewart signed with USC.
Update 3 – As of 3 pm Pacific, Rivals has USC at #3, behind GA and OHIO ST and ahead of TEXAS and PSU.