Thursday, October 05, 2006

[Daschel] Pac-10's game of year: USC vs. WSU? - The Columbian
...Is it possible we've already seen the Pac-10's Game of the Year?...

...Laugh if you want, but in the Pac-10, it's often the game you least expect that becomes the year's classic...

...So why USC-Washington State in 2006?

First, it was a darned good game. Both teams had moments on offense and defense, there were big plays, the atmosphere was electric and the outcome wasn't assured until the scoreboard clock hit zero.

The second part, we won't know until season's end. The Trojans appear capable of running the table for a third straight year against Pac-10 competition. And don't be surprised if the Cougars are nipping at their heels in the standings...
Johnson Reviews His Performance - LA Times
Seeing is believing.

That's what freshman tailback Stafon Johnson found out early last month in USC's film room when he dissected his daily performance.

Since that lengthy session, Johnson has slowly progressed from the bottom of the depth chart. On Wednesday, with C.J. Gable out again because of a groin strain and Allen Bradford working with the scout team, Johnson returned kickoffs and took numerous repetitions with the first- and second-unit offenses.

"You've just got to be patient and let things come to you," Johnson said.

Like most freshmen, Johnson was in a hurry to play when he arrived from Dorsey High as one of the Trojans' most prized recruits...
[Mackovic] Are the Trojans as good as advertised? - Desert Sun
While watching most of the USC-Washington State game last week, I was struck with how well the Cougars were playing. They were in the entire game and if one did not know any better, it would be hard to tell which team was ranked in the top ten in the country.

Certainly the Trojans showed their ability to hang in there until the end and capitalize on every opportunity, but the game was not supposed to go down to the wire. Pete Carroll let out a big sigh of relief after the game. Yes, they were playing in Pullman on a Saturday night, and I have heard things can get crazy up there. But the question remains, are the Trojans overrated?...
Favorite Uncle - LA Times
...In the rambling suburbs north of Dallas, football coaches from pee-wee league through high school welcomed Emmanuel Moody onto their teams. Those nimble feet, that twitchy acceleration. Then they discovered his physical gifts came with a familial attachment.

His young uncle showed up at practice or asked for meetings that stretched an hour. A self-described "tall, skinny, Korean guy," he had never played football yet freely offered his opinions.

"Every coach Emmanuel had, I got in some altercation with," he said.

Michael Chang...could be just as rough on his nephew...

...Not much has changed...
USC's Hazelton ready to roll if Jarrett remains on injured list - Daily Breeze
This could be the week for the emergence of USC freshman receiver Vidal Hazelton, who...has yet to catch a pass in a game.

Assuming starting split end Dwayne Jarrett can't go for the second consecutive week because of his shoulder sprain...sophomore Patrick Turner will start again and Hazelton would be Turner's backup.

Hazelton said he has settled into the job after relying merely on his athleticism in high school in Virginia...

..."I knew my plays (here), I knew what I had to do, but I was never sure going out to the line of scrimmage. Now I'm more confident in exactly what I have to do. Now I just go out there and have fun and play.''

Coach Pete Carroll said he's beginning to see Hazelton's work pay off...

Also, Carroll urges patience in freshmen - Daily Breeze
Freshman Receiver Set to Step Up - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
With receiver shortage, Hazelton sees opportunity - Daily Trojan
Injuries push young receivers to the fore - OC Register
Injuries again proving Trojans' Achilles' heel - Inalnd Empire Press-Enterprise
They couldn't do anything about it last January at the Rose Bowl. But at least USC fans could console themselves: It can't get any worse than this.

Who ever heard of an injury list with 16 names on it, like the one the Trojans had for that national championship game?

Those fans know better now.

Just four games into this season, the list of injured Trojans has reached 23...

...Even for USC, with four straight top recruiting classes allowing Coach Pete Carroll to play 16 freshmen already, 23 is a big bite...

Also, Offensive Line Hit by Injury Wave - LA Times
Bradford back at running back - Daily Trojan
...after switching back to defensive back last week, Bradford worked with the offense Tuesday in what he indicated was a permanent move.

"Hopefully for the rest of my career," Bradford said. "Just going to work hard, get myself up there (in the rotation)."

"After coming back to defense, he feels like he's better suited, and he's more excited about his chances on offense for the long haul, and he'd like to get settled in. I'm totally in agreement with him, and I feel fine about that," coach Pete Carroll said.

The Colton, Calif., native said he is ready to play if needed this Saturday.

"Based on my preparation, I think I'd be able to do it," Bradford said...

Also, Bradford Returns to Offense - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
Wash. State's Doba knows about Auburn, Southern Cal - Birmingham News
...Edges to USC - Doba likes Auburn quarterback Brandon Cox, noting the Trussville native is heady. But USC's John David Booty "always throws to the guy that's open, whether it's short or long. He takes what's there. He makes great decisions."

Another advantage for the Trojans is linebacker Rey Maluaga, "who's 6-foot-3, 250 pounds, runs sideline to sideline and can cover you deep."

USC played Washington State with two disadvantages. First, the Trojans played on the road. Second, they played without All-American wide receiver Dwayne Jarrett.

"I think that was to our advantage," Doba said. "But let me tell you, that (No.2 receiver) Steve Smith can play with anyone."...

Also, [Kern] There's no Texas or USC this year - Philly Daily News
[Schad] Auburn coach Tuberville calls for playoff system - ESPN
Think all losses sting the same? Think again - Tacoma News-Tribune
Secondary is not the primary concern for the Trojans - Daily Breeze
...Everybody panic, right?

Here's how the Trojans describe the picture they see.

"I wouldn't call it an eye-opener,'' strong safety Kevin Ellison said. "We just have some stuff to clean up and keep getting better.''

"Give them credit, they came to play,'' cornerback Terrell Thomas said of the Cougars. "It's a learning experience; it's the first time we got attacked and so it was a real good experience. We were ready for it; they just made some good plays.''

And now for the "however.''

The pass defense USC displayed against WSU was a disappointment at times to Carroll, who wasted no time in locking his charges in the film room and then making them apply the lessons on the practice field...

Also, Southern Cal defense is young, talented and deep - Everett Herald
Huskies' Wood savors his chance - Seattle P-I
When Marlon Wood was a boy, he would root against his father's alma mater.

Never mind that Richard Wood was USC's first three-time All-American. Never mind that Marlon's father is a member of the Trojans Hall of Fame, or that his parents met on the Los Angeles campus.

"I wanted them to lose. I never grew up a fan of (USC)," Marlon Wood said. "You could call it hatred. That's what it is."

Marlon would go so far as to buy the opponents' T-shirt and wear it around the house the week before a USC game.

"I was a little pest," he said...

Also, UW at USC: Keys to the Game - Seattle P-I
Chopping down USC - Seattle Times
Ready to put the Wood to USC - Everett Herald
Back to earth - Everett Herald
UW's Wood a Longtime Trojan Hater - Kitsap Sun

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Buzzy Trent, 77, big-wave master dies - Honolulu Advertiser
Buzzy Trent was a fearless adventurer who fought bulls in Tijuana and boxed before gaining fame as one of the legendary pioneers of big-wave surfing...

...Goodwin Murray "Buzzy" Trent Jr. died Sept. 6 at Hale Ho Aloha nursing home in Pacific Heights. He was 77...

...Trent...was an exceptional athlete who could run 100 yards in 10 seconds in high school. Trent was an all-state football player whose career was cut short at the University of Southern California by a leg injury suffered in practice...

...His grandfather, John Parkinson, was a Los Angeles architect who designed several of the city's historical landmarks, among them the Los Angeles Coliseum, City Hall and University of Southern California campus...
USC next, Willingham remains cautious - Seattle Times
Washington's weekly media luncheon Monday featured reporters from several national Web sites and newspapers calling in, each asking questions about UW's turnaround from 3-19 the past two seasons to 4-1 this year.

Maybe they should have waited a week...

...But if the Huskies beat No. 3 USC on Saturday at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum to get to that level, all those "Washington is back" stories will ring a lot more true.

Beating a rebuilding UCLA team at home or a struggling Arizona team on the road is one thing. Beating USC anywhere at any time is another...

Also, Next for UW | USC - Seattle Times
[Johns] Willingham's men are taking their surprising start in stride - King County Journal
UW faces a stern test at USC - Tacoma News-Tribune
Huskies hungry for Trojans - Washington Daily
No respect, no worries for UW - Everett Herald
[Dodd] If you haven't noticed, Willingham apparently can coach again - CBS Sportsline
Ellis In, McFoy Out - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
One Chino alum, Sedrick Ellis, returns to the USC lineup this week. But another, Chris McFoy, will be out four to six weeks.

An MRI has revealed what postgame X-rays did not -- that McFoy, the senior wide receiver who scored his first career touchdown Saturday at Washington State, suffered cracks in both his arm and shoulder blade on his next reception.

USC coach Pete Carroll said freshman wide receiver Vidal Hazelton will move into McFoy's X-back spot for the No. 3 Trojans (4-0, 2-0) when they battle for first place in the Pacific-10 against Washington...

...Ellis, USC's junior nose tackle, has missed three games after knee cartilage surgery and is expected to be back against the Huskies...

Also, McFoy out, Ellis returns - Daily Trojan
McFoy Is Lost to Injury - LA Times
Line ready for Ellis return - OC Register
Sartz upset over his 'worst game' - LA Daily News
More than one USC player struggled against Washington State, but linebacker Dallas Sartz described his effort against the Cougars as his worst game of the season.

Maybe it's because Sartz said he was reminded of that fact by linebackers coach Ken Norton Jr. on Monday, as the Trojans regrouped from giving up more yards than expected against Washington State.

"I didn't think it was a good game for myself," Sartz said. "Was it my worst game of the season? Yes.

"We didn't play up to par. Our game wasn't up to our standards, and coach Norton's not going to sugarcoat it...
[Miller] USC legacy is Booty's dream - Seattle P-I way to consider John David Booty. He's the God-fearing, young Southern gentleman gone West -- his few belongings stuffed inside a red kerchief that's tied to the end of a stick -- to seek his fortune amid the bright lights and Hollywood starlets that surround USC, the nation's biggest, big-city program.

The other is this: If the junior doesn't win a national championship or, at least, a Heisman Trophy, he's failed the Trojans quarterback legacy he inherited.

Neither is a completely fair or accurate portrayal of the nation's most publicized quarterback...

Monday, October 02, 2006

Trojans report: Strategy and personnel - CBS Sportsline
LB Rey Maualuga
-- ...his 31 stops in 4 games is 10 more than any other Trojan.

QB John David Booty -- In his first truly stressful situation, Booty completed 23 of 32 passes for 269 yards...

...RB C.J. Gable -- The true freshman has become the team's primary kick returner...

CB Terrell Thomas
-- ...penalized for pass interference and for grabbing a face mask...

Also, Trojans report: Inside slant - CBS Sportsline
Trojans report: Notes, quotes - CBS Sportsline
Smith, White, Schneider Named Pac-10 Football Players of the Week - Official Pac-10 Website
Wide receiver Steve Smith of USC, linebacker Scott White of Washington and kicker Tom Schneider of California have been named U.S. Bank Pac-10 Football Players of the Week.

With All-America receiver Dwayne Jarrett out of the lineup with an injury, Smith, a senior from Canoga Park, Calif., stepped up to key the USC offense in a hard-fought 28-22 win at Washington State. Smith had 11 receptions for 186 yards (16.9) and a pair of touchdowns covering seven and 11 yards. He accounted for most of the Trojans' 269 yards through the air...
Trojans foil WSU upset bid - Tacoma News-Tribune
...Despite successfully picking apart USC’s secondary for much of the game, Brink and his teammates – with no timeouts – couldn’t overcome the Trojans’ eight-man prevent defense and the dwindling clock.

“It’s tough when teams know you’re going to throw,”...

Brink’s 22-yard dart to Bumpus over the middle on third-and-20 gave the Cougars one last gasp at a desperation heave...

...ending up in the hands of free safety and former O’Dea High standout Taylor Mays.

Also, Cougs gain respect, but lose game - Seattle Times
Cougars come ‘oh so close’ - Daily Evergreen
The WSU football team might just be that good - Daily Evergreen
Doba needs to step forward for media, fans - Spokane Spokesman-Review
Up to the challenge - Spokane Spokesman-Review
With an agent at ICM, a strapping body, good hair and a significant movie role under his belt, actor David Ellison, 23, has officially hit the pavement in search of work...

..."Everyone tells you you should major in business," he says. "But I just hated it, to be perfectly honest." He transferred to the University of Southern California and gravitated toward the film school, even though "Hollywood and movies is a pipe dream. On my parents' radar, you don't go to school to be an actor."...

...The attorney led him to "Flyboys," which was being directed by Tony Bill, another pilot...
Good News, Bad News Kind of Game for McFoy - LA Times
It took USC receiver Chris McFoy more than four seasons to catch his first touchdown pass; it took him only one more reception to get knocked out of the game.

The fifth-year senior from Chino scored on a seven-yard throw from John David Booty to give the Trojans a 7-3 lead in the first quarter. It was the 49th reception of his college career.

"I felt liberated after all those years," McFoy said. "I just felt like the monkey is off my back."

But on his next catch, early in the second quarter, McFoy was hit by two Washington State defenders and left the game. He was taken to the locker room...his left shoulder bruised...

Also, Senior finally finds end zone - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
McFoy: TD worth the wait - San Bernardino Sun
Trojans Find Means to Win at the End - LA Times
..."This is a program that needs experiences to learn from and to grow and we're getting challenged," said Coach Pete Carroll..."The conference is stout and we're fighting our tails off."

On a warm and wind-swept afternoon, it once again was abundantly clear that USC will not be sailing to another conference title...

..."It was a reality check to go out and not hold the Pac-10 lightly," middle linebacker Rey Maualuga said. "Each game could be a close game. We all have to realize that."...

...Nearly every time the Trojans needed a big play, it seemed, Booty looked for Smith. He found him 11 times for 186 yards and two touchdowns...

Also, Trojans answer catcalls - Daily Breeze
Northwest passage - Daily Trojan
Cagey Cougars expose weaknesses in upset bid - Daily Trojan
Drive is key for Trojans - LA Daily News
Short-Term Gains Aren't Enough for This USC Team - LA Times
Trojans hang on to stop Cougs, 28-22 - Spokane Spokesman-Review
Cougs give USC a scare - The Olympian
Cougars not satified with close loss to No. 3 USC - Longview Daily News
USC pass defense sore spot for Carroll - OC Register
After reviewing film of his team's shaky 28-22 victory over Washington State on Saturday, Coach Pete Carroll sounded a little concerned about his team's ability to stop the Cougars' deep passing game.

Washington State was the Trojans' first taste of a classic Pac-10 attack and they didn't handle it well. USC's young secondary was mistake-prone and its pass rush disappeared...

...With high-flying Cal, Oregon and Notre Dame looming on the Trojans' schedule, tightening up the pass defense becomes the No. 1 priority in practice...

..."We don't play all those teams the same," Carroll said...

Also, USC questions its own play - LA Daily News
Trojans facing questions - LA Daily News
Secondary Survives First Test of Season - LA Times
Trojans Need Ellis to Rush Back - LA Times
Smith saves the day for Trojans - Daily Trojan
...That wasn't Steve Smith out there.

Steve Smith is a solid possession receiver, capable of making tough catches but lacking the elite speed or size to stand out as one of the nation's best...

...Steve Smith took the day off.

In his place was a receiver unlike any in USC's storied history of great pass catchers, with nimble feet, cuts sharper than Ann Coulter's tongue...

...His name is Super Steve, a superhero...

Also, No. 2 plays like No. 1 for Trojans - Inalnd Empire Press-Enterprise
USC looks out for No. 2 - Daily Breeze
Smith receives star treatment - LA Daily News
[Adande] Receiver Smith Registers a Strong Second - LA Times
Mr. Smith goes through WSU - The Columbian
Top 10 Player Race - Week Five - College Football News
Less Talking, More Results - Inland Empre Press-Enterprise
It is charming, effective and to be expected from a USC program that has won 49 of its past 51 games.

You don't run off decisive 99- and 83-yard drives in the second half on the road...without the kind of confidence Pete Carroll's USC teams exude...

...Some of the young Trojans defenders who gathered on the Cougars logo an hour and a half before the kickoff, after a loud jawing session with some of WSU's students and then players, didn't look like they understood...

...Maybe no one told those few young Trojans to react to the mocking crowd by ignoring it...This isn't "Miami West."...

Also, A Game They Will Remember - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
Leader's role seems to suit Booty so far - Daily Breeze
USC needs to look no further than the most important spot on the field to find a leader.

That was firmly established Saturday night in the Trojans' 28-22 win over Washington State at Martin Stadium, where quarterback John David Booty time and again delivered his team through a mistake-filled game.

Booty passed for 269 yards and three touchdowns and directed long second-half scoring drives with key fourth-down conversions, not to mention leading an offense that converted on 8 of 14 third-drown tries.

"John David has done everything that you expect a big-time quarterback to do,'' Coach Pete Carroll said...

Also, Booty acts like a winner - LA Daily News
Booty is leading man for Trojans - LA Daily News