Feb. 14-- LOS ANGELES-After striking out in its most recent recruiting class, USC has found the answer to its dwindling depth at quarterback via the transfer portal.
Former Vanderbilt quarterback Mo Hasan will join USC as a graduate transfer, he announced Friday on Twitter.
Hasan, who originally signed at Syracuse, played sparingly at Vanderbilt, starting one game over two seasons for the Commodores.
"The opportunity to graduate from a world-class university and compete in the SEC has been a childhood dream come true," Hasan wrote in his tweet. "But as you know, part of the journey is the end."
At USC, he will walk on as a redshirt senior, with one season left to play. Considering the Pac-12 offensive freshman of the year, Kedon Slovis, is returning under center, as well as injured former starter JT Daniels, it's unlikely that Hasan would seriously compete for the starting job.
But if the upcoming season is anything like the one before it, the Trojans might need him. USC lost Daniels to a season-ending knee injury less than two quarters into the 2019 campaign, before losing his replacement, Slovis, three weeks later to a concussion. With both injured, USC was left with just third-stringer Matt Fink and converted safety Brandon Perdue at the position.
Fink led USC to an upset of Utah. But the need for depth at quarterback quickly became clear the next week. After receiver Tyler Vaughns took snaps in practice and coaches talked about contingency plans, Fink struggled on the road against Washington.
Also a redshirt senior, Fink could potentially explore options elsewhere, putting an even greater premium on depth. He has not indicated one way or the other if he plans to stay at USC or seek immediate eligibility somewhere else. Fink nearly transferred to Illinois last summer, before opting to stay in L.A.
Like Fink, Hasan has flashed a flare for the dramatic. Last October, as injuries piled up on Vanderbilt's offense, Hasan led the Commodores to an upset over a ranked opponent in Missouri, completing seven of 11 passes for 120 yards and a touchdown. It was Vanderbilt's only Southeastern Conference win and Hasan's only extended opportunity, as a concussion ended his season.
Hasan is not a long-term answer to depth questions at quarterback. The Trojans are hoping to sign two quarterbacks in their 2021 recruiting class, one being Narbonne's Jake Garcia, who committed to USC last year. Mission Hills Bishop Alemany quarterback Miller Moss remains USC's other top target.
The staff has continued to cast a wide net at the position, considering how efforts to recruit a quarterback fell short this past cycle.
Santa Ana Mater Dei's Bryce Young, the top quarterback in the 2020 class, committed to USC in July 2018, only to change his mind a year later. By that point, it was too late to recruit any of the other top quarterbacks in the class.
So USC turned its attention to lower-caliber prospects, offering three-star quarterback Blake Shapen, as well as two-star Cade Fennigan. Shapen chose Baylor and Fennigan signed financial paperwork with Boise State.
Spurned by all of their recruiting targets, the Trojans mined the transfer portal to find depth at quarterback. Hasan entered the portal in December, soon after Vanderbilt added three quarterbacks during the early signing period.
Hasan arrived at Vanderbilt in 2018 after spending a season at Coffeyville College in Kansas. In seven appearances with the Commodores, he threw for 158 yards and a touchdown, while adding 79 yards in16 carries.
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