Had Carson Palmer played for another school, he would likely be regarded as the consensus choice as the best quarterback in team history, but because he played for the USC Trojans, he finds himself at the No. 2 spot.
Palmer didn't get to enjoy playing under Pete Carroll until his junior and senior seasons, which hurt his record as a starter—27-18.
However, in his final season with the Trojans, Palmer led his team to an 11-2 record on his way to a Heisman Trophy season that ended with an Orange Bowl victory over the Iowa Hawkeyes— a game in which Palmer passed for 303 yards and a touchdown.
Aside from Leinart, Palmer was the most statistically impressive quarterback during his time at USC, throwing for a school record 11,818 yards and added 72 touchdowns on 59.1 percent completions.
There is some argument over whether Palmer should be No. 1 on this list, but while Leinart had the luxury of playing under coach Carroll for his whole career and alongside better talent, he performed slightly better on the field than Palmer during his time at USC.
Still, Palmer was the first in a line of elite quarterbacks that would play for USC in the 2000's and his play on the field set the standard for Leinart, Booty, Sanchez, Barkley and any future Trojan quarterbacks.