Why the USC Trojans Can Go Far Next Season

Ethan Anderson #20 of the USC Trojans. Steve Dykes/Getty Images/AFP

The USC Trojans can be one of the top teams in the 2020-21 NCAA Basketball season. In this article, we look at why they deserve consideration for our NCAA Basketball picks.

The debate over which team is the best in the Pac-12 will heat up as the season approaches. USC is coming off a solid campaign and while they lost some talent, their head coach Andy Enfield will have them ready to compete.

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Their Newcomers

USC lost four of their starters, including Onyeka Okongwu and the only returning player with more than 10 starts is sophomore Ethan Anderson.

Two big-time recruits will fortify the frontcourt: 6′ 11″ center Evan Mobley and 6′ 10″ forward Boubacar Coulibaly. Mobley’s brother Isaiah also plays for USC. 247 Sports ranked Evan Mobley 3rd in the country and USC will also add three transfer players with immediate eligibility: guards Isaiah White and Tahj Eaddy and forward Chevez Goodwin.

White averaged 12.2 points in 27 games for Portland last season. Eaddy, on the other hand, averaged 9.1 points for Santa Clara and made 33.0 percent of his 3-point shots, attempting a team-high 138 shots from distance.

As for Goodwin, he averaged 11.9 points and 3.8 rebounds in 35 games for Wofford. Goodwin ranked fourth in the nation, shooting 64.5 percent from the field last season. He shoots 61.2 percent from the field in 105 career games with College of Charleston and Wofford.

Their 3-Point Shooting Can Win Them Games

The 3-point shot is a great equalizer in NCAA Basketball, that can’t be denied. The NCAA Basketball odds always reflect how good a team shoots from beyond the arc.

Andy Enfield has been USC’s head coach since the 2013-14 season and the team has shot over 35.0 percent from distance on every season since 2015-16. The 35.0 percent that USC shot from 3-point range last season was actually their lowest since 2015-16

Ethan Anderson is their best returning 3-point shooter. He made 37.8 percent of his attempts from downtown but that number is not so telling, as he was just 14-for-37 in 31 games (28 starts).

Isaiah White and Tahj Eaddy will help USC from beyond the arc. White made 35.7 percent of his 3-point attempts and as mentioned before, Eaddy shot 33.0 percent from distance last season.

Their Frontcourt Depth

Six USC players are 6′ 7″ or taller and all of them are expected to play for long periods of time next season. The list includes freshmen Evan Mobley and Boubacar Coulibaly, as well as Isaiah Mobley and sophomore Max Agbonkpolo, who should have increased minutes of playing time.

USC’s length and frontcourt depth will allow them to use longer lineups with athletic and versatile players against Pac-12 team with size and it can give them another edge. BetOnline has USC at +5000 to win the NCAA Tournament next season and I will make a small bet at those NCAA Basketball odds.