As new Trojan head coach Steve Sarkisian and his staff prepare to say hello to February 5—the day high school players can sign their letters of intent—they will also be saying goodbye to an important era in Trojan football.
With the end of the Bowl Championship Series (BCS)—the grand experiment which officially terminated after last season—the book was closed on a sometimes glorious, sometimes frustrating chapter of USC football.
While Trojan fans will remember the great moments fondly, the aforementioned Sarkisian and his recruiting brain trust will only be focusing on the future and plotting the path that USC will take as it moves forward with the historic program.
That won't be the case with this slideshow, though.
Instead, I will look back at USC's recruiting during the BCS era and in doing so, offer the best of those bygone classes by ranking them in the order of their quality.
Between 1998, when the BCS era started, and last season, when it ended, the Trojans signed some incredible athletes, all of whom left their mark on the program.
Without further delay, here are the best of those classes...
Note: Criteria for ranking these classes are based primarily on the individual's contribution to the team's success, individual performance while in college, and to a lesser extent, their career as a professional.