Who is James Toland IV? For starters, he is a 6’0’’, 185 pound running back from Shadow Hills High School in Indio, CA. But more than that, he is the newest addition to the Trojans’ running back arsenal which includes six talented, scholarship athletes: Silas Redd, D.J. Morgan, Tre Madden, Buck Allen, Ty Isaac and Justin Davis.
What makes Toland even more interesting is the fact that he wasn’t offered a scholarship to attend USC—and we all know the reason for that is because of the NCAA sanctioned scholarship reductions. However, Toland is definitely a talented running back who deserves a chance to compete at the collegiate level. During his senior year in high school, he ran for 2,649 yards and 39 touchdowns.
Now you may be asking yourselves, if Toland is such a talented kid and is now a part of the Trojans, why did he go unnoticed for this long? Well, it wasn’t necessarily his fault. Shadow Hills, the high school Toland attended, was in only its third year of varsity football and hadn’t even made a name for itself in Southern California. But luckily, Toland made a name for himself.
The journey to becoming a Trojan wasn’t easy for Toland and it’s not going to get easier now that he is a Trojan. He was barely signed to a college team and now he has to compete as a walk on for a roster spot with the Trojans. Toland isn’t eligible to redshirt this year, so if he makes the team he could see some playing time behind Silas Redd and the five other talented running backs on the Trojans’ depth chart. The chances of Toland making the 66-man roster seem slim, especially with six scholarship running backs in the mix; however, it’s still a possibility. Just because he never received a scholarship to play for the USC football team, doesn’t mean he didn’t deserve one. If he carries over the success he had last season to the Trojans, that slim possibility of him making the team can become a reality and a dream come true for James Toland.