USC sophomore wide receiver Brice Butler will transfer, according to a story published on ESPNLosAngeles.com Wednesday night.
“I’m leaving because I want to play football in the NFL and a big key to that is playing in college,” Butler told ESPNLosAngeles’ Pedro Moura in a text message. “And I feel that after this season that would be a tough task staying here.”
Around 11 p.m. Wednesday, Butler announced his decision via Twitter saying, “Always will be a part of trojan nation! No regrets, I just gotta go play fball, which isn’t happening here… I love all y’all! Always will.”
Butler had not previously indicated he would transfer.
A native of Norcross, Ga., Butler had a promising freshman year in 2009, totaling 20 catches for 292 yards and two touchdowns. He played in all 12 games and started against Stanford, where he caught six passes for 96 yards, including a 36-yard touchdown grab. As a result, he was named to ESPN.com’s All Pac-10 freshman team.
Those numbers, however, failed to carry over to 2010, as he was lost among a new coaching staff. Despite playing in 12 of 13 games, he caught just nine passes for 112 yards and one touchdown, as he was behind the likes of fellow receivers Robert Woods, Ronald Johnson and Brandon Carswell.
Though Johnson was a senior, Butler would have faced stiff competition from redshirt freshman Kyle Prater, who was a highly rated recruit last year, as well as two incoming freshmen. George Farmer, who is ranked the No. 1 wide receiver and No. 3 prospect overall nationally by Yahoo! Sports’ Rivals.com, and Victor Blackwell, who is ranked 18th nationally for wide receivers by Rivals, both have committed to USC.