USC Football: Will Tate Forcier Be the Next Trojan QB After Matt Barkley?

Bill N@@Bill_N1Correspondent IMay 24, 2011

ANN ARBOR, MI - SEPTEMBER 25: Tate Forcier#5 of the Michigan Wolverines looks over the defense during the third quarter ofthe game against Bowling Green on September 25, 2010 at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Michigan defeated Bowling Green 65-21.  (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)
Leon Halip/Getty Images

Former Michigan quarterback Tate Forcier is looking at USC, Auburn, San Diego State, Montana, Kansas State and University of San Diego, according to Joe Schad of ESPN.

Forcier previously announced that he was transferring to Miami but wanted to be closer to home.  He played high school ball at San Diego (CA) Scripps Ranch, where he was a speedy dual-threat quarterback (4.58 sec 40-yard dash) and rated the nation’s most accurate quarterback (69.6 percent) by Rivals in 2008 as a 4-star.

There are only three schools on this list that meet his criteria of being close to home, and neither San Diego State or University of San Diego offer anything close to the quality of football as USC.

Forcier started all 12 games at Michigan as a freshman, completing 165-of-281 passes for 2,050 yards and 13 touchdowns, and carried the ball 118 times for 240 yards, earning Freshman All-America honorable mention and Sporting News Freshman All-Big Ten. 

As a sophomore in 2010 he appeared in eight games, completing 54-of-84 passes (64.3 percent) as a backup to fellow sophomore quarterback Denard Robinson.

Forcier will need to redshirt in 2011 and can play in the 2012 and 2013 seasons. 

If USC QB Matt Barkley leaves early for the NFL in the first round of the draft as many believe, there are three freshmen USC quarterbacks to take his place in 2012. 

USC head coach Lane Kiffin has not identified Barkley’s backup for 2011 yet, but redshirt freshman Jesse Scroggins appeared to have the lead after spring practice. True freshmen Max Wittek and Cody Kessler are rated equal in the post-spring practice depth chart.

But, none of these quarterbacks will have anything close to the game experience that Forcier had at Michigan, which might make him attractive to Kiffin.

So, what are the pros and cons for Forcier and USC in making their decisions?


Forcier Pros and Cons for selecting USC


  • Storied football program that has sent more players to the NFL than any other team
  • Good opportunity to play in 2012 as the most experienced QB (if Barkley leaves)
  • Lots of television exposure and no more bowl ban
  • Close location to home
  • Best academic institution of his candidate schools
  • Good weather, great looking co-ed women, and lots to do in Los Angeles
  • Trojan for life means lots of connections for business especially in Southern California


  • If Barkley does not leave early, he wouldn’t have a good chance to start until his senior year
  • He will be competing against three current USC QBs (but they are less experienced)
  • NCAA sanctions will limit scholarships in 2012-2014 which will affect recruiting and team depth


USC Pros and Cons for selecting Forcier


  • More experienced QB to replace Barkley who would have a year to learn the USC system
  • Accurate passer with good running ability


  • Scholarship slots are very precious (assuming 15 annual limit for the next three years)
  • Does not appear to be a team player
  • There are already three scholarship QBs to replace Barkley
  • Forcier is only 6’1”, 190 pounds
  • One of the other USC QBs might leave if he joins the team

If USC is interested it is hard to imagine that Forcier would not select the Trojans.  But, how interested will Kiffin be in another QB?

What do you think?

P.S. On May 26 ESPN's Pedro Moura reported that a USC source said they have not contacted Tate Forcier and have no plans to do so.  That is consistent with the comments below from the readers who did a great job of capturing all the reasons.