Bryce Young changes commitment from USC to Alabama

Mater Dei quarterback Bryce Young works out during the summer.
(Mark Boster / For the Times)

USC’s recruiting efforts took a big hit Sunday when the centerpiece to their 2020 class, four-star quarterback Bryce Young of Santa Ana Mater Dei, flipped his commitment to Alabama.

Young wrote that he was “forever grateful” to the USC coaching staff and fans, but announced he was de-committing from the Trojans and choosing the Crimson Tide, following a weekend visit to Tuscaloosa, Ala.

“I’d like to say a huge thank you to Coach [Clay] Helton, Coach [Graham] Harrell, Gavin [Morris], Coach [Keary] Colbert, the rest of the USC staff for the opportunity that they have given me,” Young wrote on Twitter. “I would also like to thank the USC fans and community for all the support. I will always have love for the University of Southern California, and wish for nothing but the best for its players, coaching staff, and fans.”


The 5-foot-11 dual-threat star committed to USC last July before his junior season. The Trojans were coming off back-to-back double-digit-win seasons that included a Rose Bowl victory and a Pac-12 championship with a Cotton Bowl appearance. But since then, USC has gone 8-8, finishing below .500 in 2018, the first time it had a losing record since 2000 and just the fourth time in 56 years.

Young has been electric this season for Mater Dei. He has thrown for 1,272 yards and 14 touchdowns with only one interception through four games. He is completing 73.5% of his passes and the Monarchs are 4-0 against a schedule of national powerhouses.

He led Mater Dei to an Open Division state championship last year, throwing for 3,846 yards and 39 touchdowns. He had six passes intercepted in 15 games with a 69.8% completion rate.

Young is the nation’s top dual-threat quarterback and the No. 4 overall prospect, according to 247Sports. While 247Sports rates him as a five-star prospect, the 247Sports composite rankings label him a four-star recruit, rated the No. 32 prospect in the class and the No. 2 dual threat.

USC’s recruiting class was ranked No. 43 in the nation, but the loss of Young dropped the Trojans all the way to No. 62. North Texas, Vanderbilt, Louisiana Tech, Washington State and South Florida are the teams immediately preceding USC. The Trojans have the eighth-best recruiting class in the Pac-12.

USC now has 11 commitments, but Harbor City Narbonne receiver Joshua Jackson Jr. is the only one rated as a four-star prospect. He is USC’s highest-rated commitment as the No. 291 overall prospect in the composite rankings.

Alabama remains the No. 2 recruiting class behind defending national champion Clemson. The Crimson Tide now have 23 commitments.