USC finished No. 20 in the final Associated Press media poll released Tuesday.
The Trojans completed a 9-4 season with a 45-42 Holiday Bowl victory over Nebraska.
Ohio State, winner of the College Football Playoff championship game, was No. 1 followed by Oregon, TCU and Alabama. Michigan State and Florida State tied at No. 5.
Times reporters do not vote in the poll.
USC players began spring semester classes on Monday.