The biggest college football transfer story in quite some time has been completed and the prohibitive favorite for the 2012 college football season just became a bigger favorite. Silas Redd, star running back for the Penn State Nittany Lions heading into 2012, has announced he will transfer to the University of Southern California Trojans (source - PennLive).
"I will transfer"
Redd is from Connecticut and he made a statement to the Stamford Advocate that read in part: "I will transfer to USC to complete my education and my college football career, beginning in the 2012-2013 year. I continue to have aspirations for my life, and as my family and I considered the bigger picture - both on and off the field - it became clearer to me that USC will be the best fit for my academic, athletic, and personal needs over the next two years."
It's not like the folks in Happy Valley didn't try. Team members, coaches, fans and just about anybody who was associated with Penn State implored Redd to stay. This morning, the community staged a rally for the football team with more than a 1,000 in attendance (source - USA Today). But it was to no avail.
This all began because of the Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal. The Nittany Lions were penalized by the NCAA with heavy sanctions that included a four-year bowl ban, scholarship reductions and huge fines. The NCAA offered the players the ability to transfer right away and without losing any eligibility.
The 5'10" 200 pound running back is quick, strong and has a heck of a spin move. Along with his 1,200 plus yards he gained last season, Redd also had seven touchdowns.
Great offense got greater
It's not that the USC Trojans weren't looking powerful on offense before Redd decided to join them. They have the early Heisman Trophy favorite at quarterback in Matt Barkley. They have not one but two 1,000 yard wide receivers coming into the season - Robert Woods who is already an All-American and the other Marqise Lee, could very well be All-American by season's end. Then you add 1,000 yard rusher Curtis McNeal and you have maybe the most prolific offense before the season even starts.
Now, the offense just got better because anytime you can add a 1,200 yard rusher with the talents of a Silas Redd, and couple it with the fact the team is not deep at running back, then it becomes more obvious why it's a great match. McNeal is a very good back but he's on the small size and if he was going to have to take on the brunt of all the running this year, it could very well have taken its toll.
Redd was a captain on the Penn State squad so losing him as a leader and one of their top players will be a real loss. A couple other Penn State players have started the transfer process over the last couple days including backup safety Tim Buckley who has joined the North Carolina State Wolfpack (source - ACC Sports Journal). Quarterback Rob Bolden, who had been the Nittany Lions starting quarterback on and off the last couple of years, is thought to be transferring to the LSU Tigers (source - Philly.com). Other players are considering leaving.
Both schools begin practice next Monday. The USC Trojans start their season Saturday September 1st versus the Hawaii Warriors at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
Said Trojan Athletic Director Pat Haden: "We welcome Silas Redd to the Trojan family." I second that.
Sources - Associated Press, University of Southern California, Penn State University
Daryle lived in Los Angeles Ca. most of his life and has been a longtime fan of USC and the Pac-12, having closely followed the Trojans since he was just a youngster. Fight On!