4 USC Trojans Recruiting Targets If Justus Terry Decommits, Including Five-Star DL

Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

There’s been a lot of USC Trojans recruiting news in recent weeks regarding potential commitments, with no bigger name at risk of being flipped than Justus Terry. While USC still has a good shot at retaining its highest-rated commit, it’s still worth examining Trojans’ recruiting targets if he goes elsewhere.

It’s worth remembering that it was considered a relative surprise when Terry, rated as one of the best recruits in the country, committed to USC. Ever since Lincoln Riley and Co. have been trying to fight off the Georgia Bulldogs and Florida State Seminoles for him. Most recently, On3.com gave the Bulldogs a 37 percent chance of flipping him.

Related: USC Trojans commits 2025 tracker

Let’s dive into our USC Trojans recruiting targets if Terry flips to Georgia.

Elijah Griffin, Defensive Lineman, Savannah Christian Prep (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Losing Justus Terry would obviously mean missing out on one of the highest-rated recruits in the nation. He’s a 6-foot-4 and 275-pound destructive force at the line of scrimmage, who is viewed as a consensus top-10 player. However, Elijah Griffin is a higher-rated recruit.

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  • Elijah Griffin stats (2023): 17.5 sacks with 31 tackles for loss

Coming out of Savannah Christian Prep in Georgia, the 290-pound lineman is a consensus top-five recruit overall. More importantly, in terms of his athleticism, he is a former standout in the shot put who also boasts a remarkable vertical jump approaching 35 inches. Griffin has also been absurdly productive at the high school level, recording 35.5. If Terry flips to Georgia, Griffin should be USC’s top target and he’s shown interest in the program with a June visit.

Iose Epenesa, Defensive Lineman, Edwardsville High School (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Bloodlines do matter to football coaches, in part because many of those players are familiar with the work ethic it takes to play at the highest levels. Iose Epenesa, the brother of NFL veteran A.J. Epensa, is another one of the defensive linemen on USC’s radar who could become a bigger focal point if Terry flips.

Related: USC Trojans among finalists for enticing four-star DL recruit

Epenesa would be an edge rusher, as he’s listed at 6-foot-3 and under 240 pounds. However, one way to make up for a weaker interior pass rush is with edge defenders who can collapse the pocket on their own from the outside. 247 Sports’ Gabe Brooks noted that Epenesa has an outstanding motor and work ethic, but just as important is the fact that Epensa has shown to be advanced with his hand usage. Plus, with the Trojans now playing in the Big Ten, it could mean offering Epensa more opportunities to play closer to home than when USC was in the Pac-12.

DJ Sanders, Defensive Lineman, Bellville High School (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Five-star recruits should obviously headline the top Trojans recruiting targets, but there are only so many and plenty are already strong commits to other programs. Fortunately, DJ Sanders is among the intriguing defensive linemen still available and the 290-pound tackle has USC among the schools on his radar.

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Hudson Standish of 247 Sports’ wrote that Sanders is one of the strongest defensive linemen in the country at the point of attack among 2025 recruits. He also knows how to use that power in hand-to-hand combat, consistently winning the leverage battle in the trenches. There’s also some juice behind all that stretch, as Sanders has proven in high school as a multi-sport athlete. While he isn’t as high profile as Terry, Sanders would provide the Trojans with the tools to become an above-average defensive tackle at the next level.

Trajen Odom, Defensive Lineman, Weddington High School (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

Even if Terry sticks to his commitment, Trajen Odom is a player that USC would greatly benefit from adding. The Trojans are already among the finalists for the 6-foot-4 defensive lineman and it’s easy to see why.

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On3.com is the highest on Odom, rating him as the 13th-best defensive lineman in the 2025 recruiting class. The North Carolina standout has an eye on the West Coast, with USC, Oregon, and UCLA among the programs he is highest on. While Odom didn’t rack up gaudy pass-rushing stats as a junior (4 sacks), he did generate 22 tackles for loss. At the very least, Odom could be a long-term rotational defensive tackle at USC and there’s enough ceiling for him to eclipse that if the Trojans land him.