Jordan Addison Says Decision to Transfer to USC from Pittsburgh Was a 'Gut Move'

Adam WellsMay 28, 2022

ATLANTA, GEORGIA - DECEMBER 30: Jordan Addison #3 of the Pittsburgh Panthers rushes with the ball during the third quarter against the Michigan State Spartans during the Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on December 30, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)
Todd Kirkland/Getty Images

Star wide receiver Jordan Addison has opened up about his decision to transfer from Pittsburgh to USC.

Speaking to ESPN's Paolo Uggetti, Addison called it a "gut move" to leave the Panthers after winning the 2021 Biletnikoff Award to join new USC head coach Lincoln Riley's team.

"I was looking for a great coach and a good football opportunity," said Addison. "I'm still figuring myself out and what I want to do and I feel like I have a great opportunity to do that where I'm at now."

Addison's decision to enter the transfer portal caught many by surprise. He was coming off a fantastic 2021 season at Pitt with 1,593 yards and 17 touchdowns on 100 receptions.

After Addison entered the portal May 3, ESPN's Pete Thamel noted his decision wouldn't be motivated by name, image and likeness money but finding the best situation for him to better prepare for a future in the NFL.

USC, Texas and Alabama were among the schools Addison considered. The Maryland native announced May 19 that he was going to play for the Trojans.

Jordan Addison @Espn_Jordan

<a href="https://t.co/5oN0ZVGsCC">pic.twitter.com/5oN0ZVGsCC</a>

Addison becomes a critical piece for USC heading into Riley's first season as head coach. Riley was a surprise hire by the program because it didn't seem like he was going to leave Oklahoma. The 38-year-old signed a six-year extension with the Sooners in 2020 and had a 55-10 record with four Big 12 titles in five seasons from 2017 to 2021.

As a result of Riley getting a late start in recruiting for the Trojans, their incoming class of prospects ranks 10th in the Pac-12 by the 247Sports Composite.

Addison joined Antonio Bryant and Larry Fitzgerald as the only players in Pitt history to win the Biletnikoff Award as the nation's best wide receiver.

USC hasn't won at least 10 games in a season since 2017 (11-3). The program hasn't played in a bowl game in three of the past four years.