USC recruiting is trending back towards a time when the Trojan coaches could pick and choose their recruiting class. While it isn’t all the way back to a point where USC runs the conference alone, the Trojans are again beginning to punch their weight when it comes to chasing big-time prospects locally and across the country.
On Wednesday, USC landed on the top lists of two West Coast prospects.
Four-star wide receiver Cristian Dixon (Santa Ana, Calif./Mater Dei) is a 6-foot-2, 187-pound prospects who has held a USC offer for a long time. He included the Trojans along with Cal, LSU, Michigan, Nebraska, Oregon, Texas A&M and Washington State.
Dixon has a good relationship with USC cornerbacks coach Donte Williams from his time at Oregon and the Trojans are very much involved here. USC doesn’t yet hold a commitment from any receivers, but they are in on several and will certainly sign at least a couple. The expectation for many of the talented receivers on this roster is not to stay for five years, so adding bodies to that depth chart every year will be important in this offense.
Mater Dei is a school that has been previously owned by USC, but it has turned into a big-time battleground campus by Oregon. The Ducks already hold a commitment from Mater Dei wide receiver Kyron Ware-Hudson in this class. Oregon signed linebacker Mase Funa, running back Sean Dollars and defensive tackle Keyon Ware-Hudson out of Mater Dei in the 2019 class, grabbed defensive tackle Austin Faoliu in the 2018 class and defensive tackle Andrew Faoliu in 2017.
Dixon is the nation’s No. 176 overall prospect.
USC also made the final group of schools for four-star offensive guard Owen Prentice (Seattle/O’Dea). The 6-foot-3, 295-pound lineman is the nation’s No. 212 overall prospect and attends the same school that produced former Trojan safety Taylor Mays.
Prentice has an All-Pac 12 final group of schools, as Arizona State, Cal, Stanford, UCLA and Washington join the Trojans. The Huskies have done very well with in-state prospects of late, and Washington will likely be a strong competitor for Prentice.
USC already holds commitments from offensive tackle Mason Murphy (San Juan Capistrano, Calif./JSerra) and offensive guard Maximus Gibbs (Bellflower, Calif./St. John Bosco), but are chasing a number of other offensive line prospects, including Josh Simmons (La Mesa, Calif./Helix), Tiaoalii Savea (Las Vegas/Desert Pines), Bram Walden (Scottsdale, Ariz./Saguaro) and many others.
USC signed six offensive linemen in the 2020 recruiting class, but could bring in another handful this year to make up for very small classes in 2018 and 2019.