Former Pitt Panther Jordan Addison has decided to make a move to USC Football. In the grand scheme of things, was such a big step worth it?
Last season, Pittsburgh wide receiver Jordan Addison established himself as quarterback Kenny Pickett’s right-hand man and went on to become a household name in the college football world.
The Panthers benefited enormously from the dominating connection the two often displayed on the field. It was so dominant, in fact, that it even won them their first ACC title, as Pitt’s offense was considered one of the strongest of 2021.
When you consider such success and combine it with Pittsburgh’s history of spawning big-name talent (including but not limited to Dan Marino, Larry Fitzgerald and Aaron Donald), why would Jordan Addison want to go anywhere else?
That’s a fair question considering he’s since moved to USC – a team that has just seen its worst record (4-8) since 1991 (3-8) despite attending the most overwhelming Power Five conference has participated in recent years.
It should now be made clear that this step is justifiable for several reasons. USC is a bigger football brand than Pitt, is in a bigger/more marketable city than Pitt, has a better climate than Pitt, and almost certainly has a brighter future than Pitt.
If the Trojans were still struggling under former head coach Clay Helton and showing virtually no light at the end of the tunnel, chances are talent of Addison’s caliber wouldn’t even look their way. What has started to change that narrative is new head coach Lincoln Riley and talented quarterback Caleb Williams, both from the offense-gifted Oklahoma Sooners.
While Addison has lost a quarterback (pickett) to the NFL, USC has gained one with Williams and is definitely able to replicate the connection Pittsburgh had last season; The familiarity between Williams and Riley will make this all the easier.
Looking back on brand and marketability, the legalization of NIL deals certainly influenced the decision as well. As talk of Jordan Addison’s move to USC circulated, so did potential deals he could land with it. And now that he’s seemingly made the move, he most likely won’t be broke.
But the questionability of this shift has little to do with how it looks on paper. Rather, it has to do with whether Addison’s uprooting from college life was really worth it.
Even though Los Angeles is more attractive than Pittsburgh, that doesn’t mean the latter isn’t attractive at all. Pittsburgh remains a great sports city that lives and breathes football. So, highlighting yourself as a college football talent and NFL hope would lead to some serious lifts for Addison’s brand as well.
With all of that in mind, the move makes less sense and even feels a bit redundant.
In short, Addison will obviously do what he feels is in the best interest of his success on and off the field. With that in mind, it’s understandable that he would bring his talents to Southern Cal. But considering he’s also seen or would see a decent amount of it with Pitt – where he’s already been – was it worth it? This is up for further discussion.