The USC Trojans entered the 2019 National Signing Day with hope and yet mixed emotions. The offseason has been difficult within the programs walls. Kingsbury came and went to the NFL in 34 days and yet through all the silence of Heritage Hall the staff was able to sign what may be a great OC in Graham Harrell. Harrell had options and given what just took place with Kingsbury there had to be some serious doubts.
National signing day is also facing difficult review of coach Helton and his AD Lynn Swann. Have to wonder what would it have been like had Graham been the #1 OC on the list as he has a very interesting background and everywhere he has been the references are pretty good. In this case, maybe #2 is a better #1. Had Graham had the runway to talk to McCoy who bolted during the chaos maybe he is still taking courses in LA vs Austin. We will never know.
2019 National Signing Day is in full swing as I type this. The Trojans have their second and now only 5 Star signing in Kyle Ford. I believe he is a keeper. Did I say that about Bru McCoy? I’m not going to look. This class has a deep 3 Star roster with a sprinkling of 4 Stars as well. Is that so bad? Is a 3 Star high school senior a number that means anything? There are studies that show 5 Stars are key but we have also seen walk on’s (Matthew Family) who surprise and lower star rankings improve with the right development strategies and programs. This is where the story unfolds.
Under Coach Helton you have to step back. Run his first 3 years with Max Brown finishing year one and then Sam Darnold entering the stage. Max was rusty after sitting but was Max a strong 5 Star to begin with? Hard to say thanks to Cody Kesslers amazing durability and capability. Say what you want about Cody but he may have hurt Max and his development indirectly. Not blaming Cody just stating a belief that I have in Max and his lack of progress. Who was the QB coach back then?
USC has an opportunity with this mid range star class. They can show the CFB world that this team will develop. That this team with the right strength and skill programs wrapped in top notch Nutritional Program could be that team that everyone talks about. The team that no one see’s coming but no one wants to line up against in November, December or in the Playoffs. Is this team capable of that? Is the staff the KEY or the impediment?
The staff clearly has to answer the bell in 2019. They have to come out barking loud and long. They have to face their doubters face to face and not hide when things are tough. Get in front of the media. Don’t show up after a win only to hide when things don’t work out. Build trust through transparency. This is what true leadership is defined as. Walk that tough walk and exit the dark tunnel in the light of a season that NO ONE expects to see. USC has the talent. The 2019 National Signing day signatures are good athletes. Each should show up with that Chip on their shoulders and stay focused and prove it in the classroom to the field of battle in the newly renovated LA Coliseum.
Fight On New Recruits!