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Trojans add another big piece to 2021 class

College football recruiting might be in a dead period right now, but the USC Trojans are alive on the trail, as head coach Clay Helton and staff added another piece to what is becoming a very good 2021 class.

The newest commitment comes in the form of 6-foot-2, 190-pound safety Xamarion Gordon (Downey, Calif./Warren), a four-star prospect and top-20 player at his position.

Gordon is a big hitter and brings a very physical presence to the defensive secondary, and those qualities would seem to fit in well with what defensive coordinator Todd Orlando and safeties coach Craig Naivar are looking for on that side of the ball.

Gordon held offers from Arizona State, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Oregon, UCLA, Utah and others, before announcing his commitment to USC. And it’s safe to say, the USC defensive coaching staff was excited, led by Orlando.

He is commitment No. 6 for the Trojans in the 2021 class, and the fourth four-star-or-better prospect. His commitment also moves USC past Oregon for the best class in the Pac-12.

Every position will be important to recruit in this class, as the Trojans had few scholarships to work with in the 2020 group. While USC loaded up on offensive and defensive linemen, the Trojans did not sign any cornerbacks, safeties, linebackers, running backs or quarterbacks.

USC has two veteran safeties returning this season and potentially again in 2021, in Talanoa Hufanga and Isaiah Pola-Mao. But with a void caused by signing zero safeties in this past class, Gordon should have a quick opportunity to push up the depth chart when he arrives on campus.

Gordon is the first defensive back commitment in this class for USC, and is the second commitment of the past week for the Trojans. Four-star running back Brandon Campbell (Katy, Texas/Katy) committed to USC in late March.

And Campbell was vocal about the commitment, as he has quickly become one of USC’s loudest vocal recruiters since making his own commitment to the Trojans.

Those two join five-star quarterback Jake Garcia (La Habra, Calif./La Habra), four-star linebacker Ma’a Gaoteote (Bellflower, Calif./St. John Bosco), four-star defensive tackle Jay Toia (Simi Valley, Calif./Grace Brethren) and three-star offensive tackle Mason Murphy (San Juan Capistrano, Calif./JSerra) in this class for USC.

Gordon was offered by USC this past December. The Trojans signed just two four-star prospects in the 2020 class, when USC finished with the No. 10 recruiting class in the Pac-12, and No. 55 class overall.

This commitment also resonated with four-star safety Anthony Beavers (Harbor City, Calif./Narbonne), who recently released a top-five list of Arizona State, Michigan State, Virginia Tech, Florida A&M and San Diego State, but is likely still very much in play for the Trojans. USC coaches have spoken at length about locking down the Los Angeles and greater Southern California areas, and their efforts are being noticed.



Erik McKinney
Author
Erik McKinney

Erik McKinney began writing for WeAreSC in 2004, during his junior year at USC, covering the Trojans football team and recruiting. He then moved on to ESPN.com in 2011, where he served as the West Region recruiting reporter and then the Pac-12 recruiting reporter. He took over as publisher of WeAreSC in January, 2019.


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