Top 2026 quarterback recruit Julian Lewis commits to USC

Lincoln Riley’s USC quarterback succession plan is now laid out all the way until the fall of 2026.

Julian Lewis, the No. 1 overall player in the 2026 class, according to’s composite rankings, committed to USC on Tuesday morning.

Lewis is a sophomore at Carrollton (Ga.) High School with offers from every big school in the country. He was the MaxPreps National Freshman of the Year in 2022, leading Carrollton to the state championship game with a 14-1 record.

After USC starter Caleb Williams became the third quarterback Riley led to a Heisman Trophy, it is no surprise that a talent like Lewis is drawn to the Trojans.

Williams is expected to go to the NFL after this upcoming season, and the expectation is that Malachi Nelson, the five-star quarterback from Los Alamitos, will be next up to carry on the Heisman lineage. Nelson would have to beat veteran backup Miller Moss to win the starting job.

USC does not have a quarterback committed for the 2024 and 2025 classes. That will surely happen.

It’s hard to write anything in stone in college football these days, but Nelson would be a senior when Lewis arrives as a freshman. With so much time between now and then, there’s a chance Lewis could decide to reclassify to the class of 2025.