With fifteen scholarships and currently nine verbal commitments, USC has to hit their targets for their needs again this year. Last year was a bit off for the Trojans, signing only four of the top fifteen players ranked by Rivals with only three of their fifteen from out of state.
So far this year, USC has obtained commitments from three of the top ten California prospects with five others listing USC as a favorite or in their final group (California rankings by Rivals, 2013).
Since USC must be selective, how it impacts the Irish and a spreadsheet follows after the Jump.
The Trojans best need may be 1 more DT/NT. At this point, none of their targets are considering ND. Eddie Vanderdoes is their top target.
They should take another Safety to pair with Cravens. Tahaan Goodman (CA), Max Redfield (CA) and Leon McQuay (FL) are their targets. Goodman is higher ranked by Rivals, is an in-state prospect, and has USC in his top two. Redfield is very much on ND's radar, though he lists USC and Oregon as his top two. McQuay is not considering the Irish and may end up with Vandy or Michigan.
USC should take another CB to go with Hawkins. Priest Willis (AZ), Cole Luke (AZ) and Johnny Johnson (CA) have USC in their top groups - and all have scheduled Official Visits with the Irish. Other Irish targets, L.J. Moore (CA) and MacKenzie Alexander (FL), do not list USC. Moore has an Official Visit scheduled with the Irish, too.
USC needs an Outside Linebacker. Michael Hutchings (CA) lists USC as a favorite and is considering ND, but has not visited. Alex Anzalone (PA) lists USC, but he is a longshot for them. Should they miss on Hutchings, they could focus on Tyree Robinson (CA), though they won't have room for his brother. Hatcher could move to OLB, opening up another DLine spot.
With those four positions filled, USC will fill the other two with a defensive lineman and an offensive lineman. Nico Falah (CA) is down to UCLA vs USC. USC got four offensive linemen last year, but, so far, has none this year. WDE Jason Hatcher (TN), offered by ND, has USC in his top 5, which does not include the Irish.
It is difficult to imagine that USC would not recruit any Offensive linemen and only one Defensive End in 2013.
One prospect that this would leave out would be Demorea Stringfellow, WR (CA). His top four include USC, Florida, Washington and Ole Miss. All four already have two Wide Receiver commits.
Getting commitments from Vanderdoes, Goodman, Johnson, Hutchings, Falah gives them seven of the top ten California prospects. Four players would be from out of state this year.
They don't have room for any Special teams players, except perhaps as Preferred Walk-Ons.