‘I wish to be higher than I used to be final yr’: USC’s Caleb Williams goals to be higher in his Heisman repeat

The bronze trophy sits in the identical spot on his eating room desk, a reminder of the excessive bar he set in his first season at USC. And within the three heady months since he first lifted his Heisman, changing into the eighth Trojan to win the glory, Caleb Williams has had loads of time to think about how his encore may prime it.

For one factor, his plans embody making more room on the desk.

“I’m going to have two of them quickly!” Williams stated Wednesday when requested the place his Heisman was, a smile on her face.

Just one participant in faculty soccer historical past has managed to carry the Heisman a second time, Ohio State’s Archie Griffin, and his second win got here almost 50 years in the past. The chances for second to repeat are stacked towards the USC junior quarterback, and his coach, Lincoln Riley, has made it clear that he and Williams haven’t spent a lot time, if in any respect, speaking about it. that.

“We most likely haven’t talked about it because the day he received it,” Riley stated.

However with an enormous bronze reminder observing him each morning, Williams has thought of the likelihood whereas planning his objectives for subsequent season.

USC’s star quarterback lastly sat all the way down to make these plans official Wednesday, copying his objectives onto a word taped to his cellphone’s house display. Many of the objectives, he stated, targeted on being extra constant or extra environment friendly.

“I wish to be higher than final yr,” Williams stated. “There have been issues I may have carried out higher final yr that I’m attempting to do now. There’s way more that I do know. I simply wish to be the perfect.”

It undoubtedly received’t be simple to enhance upon a stellar sophomore marketing campaign that ranked not solely as the perfect in faculty soccer final season, but additionally maybe the perfect in USC historical past. Williams set college data for passing yards (4,537), complete touchdowns (52), landing passes (42), speeding yards by a quarterback (382), and speeding touchdowns by a quarterback (10). The Trojans went 11-3 and received the Pac-12.

However when Williams sat down to think about the place he may enhance, he saved coming again to effectivity.

“If I’m extra environment friendly, the extra touchdowns, the extra yards I’ll have,” Williams stated.

Riley had two Heisman-winning quarterbacks when he was teaching at Oklahoma, however has by no means returned to highschool.

USC quarterback Caleb Williams (13) and backup Miller Moss (7) heat up throughout a spring apply session at Howard Jones Area on Wednesday.

(Luis Sinco/Los Angeles Instances)

The coach has tried to seek out different areas through which to problem Williams, making it clear to his quarterback that he must make “drastic enhancements” to realize among the lofty objectives he has set for himself and the staff. which they didn’t attain. the Faculty Soccer Playoff and misplaced to Tulane within the Cotton Bowl.

“That’s been our deal all offseason, final yr it wasn’t ok,” Riley stated. “If we play and practice like we did final yr, then that’s not what this staff wants and it’s not what we anticipate in any respect. … We’ve actually been in a position to push him right here the final month, and clearly we’re going to push him arduous and anticipate quite a bit from him right here within the spring, each as a participant and as a pacesetter.”

For Williams, that has meant taking over extra of a mentoring function this spring, serving to five-star freshman Malachi Nelson study the ropes. It doesn’t damage that she’s identified Nelson for years on the tenting circuit. His dad and mom additionally converse recurrently, sharing methods to assist their star quarterback sons succeed.

“It’s a brand new function for me that’s superb and one thing I’m going full steam forward in,” Williams stated.

It has loads of different new additions to get used to this spring. Their receiving corps has been rebuilt, with switch Dorian Singer taking a lead function and two gifted freshmen becoming a member of the combo in Zach Department and Makai Lemon.

Department particularly has made a primary impression on USC coaches. Williams known as the outstanding 5-foot-10 Las Vegas Bishop Gorman “an explosive little man.”

“That man from a expertise standpoint is particular,” receivers coach Dennis Simmons stated.

The offensive line can also be breaking into two transfers, whereas Justin Dedich strikes to middle, giving Williams a brand new middle.

There can be loads of time to unravel the issues arising from these adjustments. As Williams embarks on his second spring at USC, his sights are on elevating the bar once more.