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USC Revels in an Exciting Week of Triumphant Victories

Updated: Apr 29

Caleb Williams with Rodger Goodell at NFL Draft night and Reggie Bush at 2004 National Championship Trophy presentation in Miami, Florida at Fedex Orange Bowl
Left: © Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports Right:© Kirby Lee-USA TODAY

The Men of Troy are basking in the glory of redemption and validation.


The bluest of blue-bloods in college football has had a glorious last couple of days as the mighty USC Trojans continue to fight on (and fight back) to maintain their status as one of the best all-time in the history of the sport.

Bush "Pushes" Back

First, the great Trojan running back and 2005 Heisman Trophy winner Reggie Bush took the battle to the ahem “powers” that be, the NCAA, in a furious onslaught to have his Heisman returned to him. As the worst organization in the history of worst organizations, the NCAA stripped Bush of his award after it was determined that Bush received improper cash payments and gifts for himself and his family members. Bush then proceeded to lead an attack on the governing body of collegiate sports (and I use that term very loosely) that went on for over a decade.

But the landscape of college sports in general, and college football in particular, has changed with a seismic shift, with players now being able to earn money while playing football based on their name, image, and likeness (NIL). As such, the Heisman Trust decided to change its thought process and align it with the current rulings.

In a shocking turn of events, the Trust returned the most prestigious award in college sports into the hands of arguably the most electrifying player ever to tote the rock in the last 20 years. In addition, USC now holds the distinction as the school with the most Heisman Trophy winners with eight players to hoist the hardware.

Marcus Allen running with ball against Ohio State in 1980 Rose Bowl.
Marcus Allen in 1980 Rose Bowl vs #1 Ohio State Photo Credit © Long Photography-USA TODAY Sports

Bush rejoins a fraternity of those that have hoisted the legendary hardware which includes:

1965- Mike Garrett

1968- O.J "Juice" Simpson

1979- Charles White

1981- Marcus Allen

2002- Carson Palmer

2004- Matt Leinart

2005- Reggie Bush

2022- Caleb Williams

In addition, Bush continued his assault on the NCAA by bringing a defamation suit against them for “maliciously attacking his character, according to Bush’s lawyer. In 2021, the NCAA had issued the following statement:

"Although college athletes can now receive benefits from their names, images and likenesses through activities like endorsements and appearances, NCAA rules still do not permit pay-for-play type arrangements," an NCAA spokesperson said in that statement. "The NCAA infractions process exists to promote fairness in college sports. The rules that govern fair play are voted on, agreed to, and expected to be upheld by all NCAA member schools."

--- NCAA statement- issued on July 28, 2021, in response to an inquiry about the possibility of Bush having his records and participation restored in light of changes to name, image and likeness rules.

Bush argued that he did not engage in pay-for-play while playing for the Trojans and has appealed all sanctions handed down. Bush is seeking to have his records and achievements restored from his playing days at USC. In addition, Bush is seeking damages, both punitive and compensatory.

Will USC now take on the NCAA to have their vacated wins returned to their legendary scrolls of conquests? Only time will tell. But for now, Reggie Bush can return to the home of his greatest athletic feats, a conquering hero.

#1 on Day One of the NFL Draft

Caleb Williams on NFL Draft stage with Rodger Goodell
© Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

On NFL Draft Day, the Trojans also took over the top spot as the school with the most #1 overall draft picks as the Chicago Bears selected QB Caleb Williams #1 overall in this year’s draft. Williams now joins O.J. Simpson, Ron Yary, Ricky Bell, Keyshawn Johnson, and Carson Palmer as the Men of Troy who were selected #1 overall pick in the NFL Draft.

Further for USC

In addition, with Williams’ selection, USC is also on record for having the most draft picks of any school in college football in the common draft era (since 1967).

It is also notable that USC head coach Lincoln Riley is the only coach in college football history to have three of his quarterbacks selected #1 overall: Williams, Baker Mayfield, and Kyler Murray.

Yes, a triumphant week for the Trojans, indeed.



"USC Revels in an Exciting Week of Triumphant Victories" is Tony Thomas' first article after rejoining College Football Dawgs. For more articles by Tony, check out his work at the links below:


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