Despite having its Pac-12 Tournament and March Madness hopes cut short by the coronavirus pandemic, the USC men’s basketball team has maintained its strong presence on the recruiting trail for the 2020 and 2021 seasons.
The Trojans landed two top-eight California recruits — four-star shooting guards Reese Dixon-Waters of St. Bernard and Malik Thomas of Damien, who committed to USC last week.
Although it is early, USC now has the No. 1 recruiting class for 2021. Dixon-Waters and Thomas will join Mater Dei center Harrison Hornery in the class.
Dixon-Waters announced his commitment to USC in a video posted to his social media accounts last Tuesday, and Thomas announced his commitment online via the Compton Magic’s Twitter account three days later.
“As a kid, USC was my dream school,” Dixon-Waters said per 247Sports. “I always wanted to go there. It’s closer to home so my family can be at every home game, and I love the school coaches.”
In addition, Wofford junior forward Chevez Goodwin, Santa Clara junior guard Tahj Eaddy and Utah Valley junior guard Isaiah White announced their transfers to USC last week, joining three-star center Boubacar Coulibaly of San Gabriel Academy on the long list of March additions to the Trojans’ 2020 roster.
“Academically [USC] has what I want to major in,” Goodwin said per 247Sports. “That was big. Then coach [Andy] Enfield has a plan for me. He wants me to play for him and knows exactly how I play and how he wants to get me better. It was all genuine.”
USC is still awaiting decisions from Jalen Green, Ziaire Williams, Greg Brown, Joshua Christopher and Makur Maker, all of whom are top-12 recruits nationally in the Class of 2020. Williams — the No. 5 player in the nation — will likely be at the top of USC’s list, as the Sierra Canyon shooting guard has USC in his top six along with Arizona, Stanford, North Carolina, UCLA and Oregon.
USC will be keeping a close eye on Moussa Cisse, Kennedy Chandler and Zaon Collins in hopes to add onto their already-impressive 2021 class.
The Trojans’ 2018 and 2019 recruiting classes ranked 18th and 7th respectively in the nation per 247Sports. The 2020 class is not repeating as a top-20 national finish thus far as USC currently sits in 50th place, but the incoming class is far from a disappointment.
Headlining the 2020 class is five-star center Evan Mobley from Rancho Christian in Temecula. Mobley is listed as the No. 2 player in the country behind Oklahoma State commit Cade Cunningham. The two, along with Emoni Bates of Lincoln High School in Ypsilanti, Mich., were named finalists for the 2019-20 Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year award.
The cancellations of the Pac-12 and NCAA tournaments cut USC’s opportunities to prove itself short this season, but the USC coaching staff and athletic director Mike Bohn are looking forward to the bright future USC basketball seems to have in store as the Trojans attract top recruits from across the country.