USC Trojans identified as ‘school to watch’ for CFB star in transfer portal

As the USC Trojans await a decision from quarterback Will Howard in the 2023 college football transfer portal, it appears Lincoln Riley and Co. have a shot at landing one of the best players who just entered the portal.

Evan Stewart, a 2022 five-star recruit, recently announced his intention to leave the texas A&M Aggies football program. With Texas A&M headed in a new direction, Stewart is seeking better opportunities elsewhere and it appears USC could be one of the teams with the best odds of landing him.

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After entering the transfer portal, Pete Nakos of named Ole Miss, Florida State, Oregon and USC as four schools to watch for Stewart.

  • Evan Stewart stats 2023: 38 receptions, 514 receiving yards, 4 touchdowns, 13.5 yards per catch

Stewart, who was born in Tennessee, was rated by 347 Sports’ as the No. 6 prospect in the 2022 recruiting class and the best wide receiver in the nation. However, Stewart’s production declined in 2023 after a promising freshman season (53 receptions, 649 receiving yards, 12.2 yards per catch) with the Aggies.

If Stewart landed at USC, he could be an immediate weapon in Lincoln Riley’s offense. This past season with Texas A&M, Stewart earned a 96.1 PFF receiving grade on 14 deep targets, turning those looks into 6 receptions for 201 receiving yards and 3 touchdowns.

He can also do a lot more for USC, too. According to Pro Football Focus, Stewart was highly effective on intermedia routes (10-19 yards downfield), turning 21 targets into 11 receptions, 172 receiving yards and 1 touchdown. While he was productive on passes behind the line of scrimmage, Steart’s skill set makes him a playmaker who can consistently create explosive plays.

USC’s quarterback uncertainty could play a role in an eventual decision, however. Tennessee is poised to start quarterback Nico Iamaleave in 2024, handing over the reins to the best quarterback prospect in the 2023 class. Meanwhile, Oregon landed Dillon Gabriel in the transfer portal and Stewart could see an opportunity to team up with a Heisman Trophy contender next fall.