2nd: Pac-12 (1st in South Division)
13th: Division I
2017 In A Sentence: The Trojans won the Pac-12 title after defeating Stanford in the conference’s championship game but losses to Washington State and Notre Dame cost USC from being included in the College Football Playoff and settled for a Cotton Bowl bid which it lost to Big 10 champion Ohio State to to finish 10-3 overall.
Biggest Shoes to Fill: QB Sam Darnold decided to leave USC after his redshirt sophomore season. He finished with 4,143 yards with 26 touchdowns and 13 interceptions in his final season. Darnold was selected third overall in this past spring’s NFL Draft by the New York Jets.
Key Player: WR Tyler Vaughns caught 57 balls for 809 yards and five scores. The now-sophomore, along with six other returning starters on offense, will help lead in new quarterback JT Daniels, who is a true freshman.
Fearless Prediction: Two tough road games for the Trojans on the road in Stanford and Texas will test the young quarterback Daniels. The defense, which returns eight starters might need to carry the team at least to start the season. Expect the Trojans to struggle early but will likely be a much better team towards the end of this season and could be still challenge for the South Division crown if all falls right for USC.