to the OP: have u visited USC Law? its an old soviet style building with lots of smokers nervously discussing the worsening legal sector in LA. The school is fortified by LAPD and DPS, and the area is possibly the gloomiest in Los Angeles. Hardly any healthy eating options and no good grocery stores, movie theaters, clubs etc nearby. Its a depressing neighborhood and can take a toll on an already sad 1L. Crime is a factor and dont believe the students that say it doesn't affect them. It sure does. When i was there for undergrad, we got weekly emails from the campus police detailing all sorts of armed robberies and knife attacks. Its a great place to get a head start in criminal law as you will be put in the shoes of the victim.
Area aside, the school is not recognized as an elite institution by anyone outside of southern California. "USC" on the east is even mistaken often for the University of South Carolina. Sure it has a great alumni network, but theyre not going to simply hand over a nice job to you because you went there. In fact, if they're smart recruiters/partners, they will extend an offer to the UChicago guy before USC to impress/comfort future clients. Can you image a elitist east coast client being told their case is being handled by a group from USC?
Now, I love USC and will be there this fall and dont want to compete with UChicago caliber peeps, so go there. peace.