Friday, September 28, 2007

[Collin] USC's Moore is right at home - Daily Breeze
Kyle Moore certainly looks right at home, even when it appears he's out of place.

After all, it's not often you see a 6-foot-6, 275-pound defensive lineman hovering where a linebacker should be. For sure, when USC coach Pete Carroll searched for a guy who knows how to get around, he found the right guy.

Born in Germany to a military family, Moore spent his earliest years traipsing through Europe. The family moved on to Texas, and when Army 1st Sgt. Joseph Moore retired, the clan moved to Georgia.

And after being named that state's 5A Defensive Player of the Year, Kyle Moore wanted to broaden his horizons even further...
Rivers is living up to his billing - LA Times
USC linebacker Keith Rivers leaped to break up a pass play, then collided with cornerback Terrell Thomas and fell to the turf.

"Get up!" Thomas demanded, as Rivers lay prone on his stomach during Thursday's practice. "Get up!"

After a few tense moments, Rivers slowly got to his feet, checked his left ankle and hobbled back to the drill as USC players and coaches exhaled in relief.

"I just tweaked it a little bit," Rivers said after completing practice. "I'm not worried about it."...
Know your enemy: USC - Washington Daily
Victory over USC has never been easy for the Huskies. In the 80-plus years of history between the two teams, the Dawgs have come out victorious only 26 of 76 times.

Most people probably don’t think “rivalry” when they think of USC vs. UW, especially considering the poor record the Huskies have against the Trojans. Nevertheless, the two teams have battled for Pac-10 supremacy since the 1920s and have a combined 51 Pac-10 championships under their belts.

The first win came in the inaugural game between the two, when the Huskies beat the Trojans 22-0 in 1923. Since then, victories have been a bit scarce, with the last one coming in 2001...

Also, Huskies face No. 1 Trojans in Pac-10 home opener - Washington Daily
1960 ‘title’ a reach? Maybe, but UW might’ve been No. 1 - Tacoma News-Tribune
USC's Williams gets back in the game - OC Register
The pain was obvious, but Thomas Williams didn't know just how costly a sprained knee cap would be when he had to leave the 2005 Cal game.

He had to watch the final three games, including the Rose Bowl, from the sideline that year, then he watched two younger linebackers, Rey Maualuga and Brian Cushing, move ahead of him on the depth chart the following season.

Williams, now a senior, figures to get his first start since that day when USC plays at Washington on Saturday.

He didn't expect to go 19 games between starts, but a lot of players at USC have had to get used to recruits taking their jobs...
[McGrath] Stop me if you’ve heard this one: USC is loaded - Tacoma News-Tribune
...Whenever I’m reminded that USC is strong, deep, fast, big, hungry, angry and virtually unbeatable, the notion of more talented reinforcements waiting in the wings hits me the way fried foods affected Satchel Paige: It angers up my blood...

...check out that USC roster!

The offensive line is anchored by three future first-round draft choices, buying time for a quarterback who might throw the best pure pass on the West Coast. There’s a superstar tailback sustaining a legacy at USC that has showcased backs of every persuasion: dashers, slashers, dodgers, grinders, burners and bammers.

And the defense?...

Also, High-flying offenses put coaches on defense - Tacomna News-Tribune
[Goe] Don't discount Huskies, USC coach says - Portland Oregonian
Extending its rein - Daily Trojan
Offensive firepower without the flare - Daily Trojan
USC's Gable doesn't know about diminished role - LA Daily News
They're No. 1 on this list too - LA Times
[Tramel] Open-door policy works for USC - Tulsa World
...Will USC's success inspire college football coaches to be less secretive?

"I don't find much energy towards being paranoid about what's going on on the practice field," Trojans coach Pete Carroll said during a press conference last week.

Carroll actually said he wants distractions at practices.

...That's what we're going to do on game day. The closer I can get it to that feeling, that sense, the more I'm going to do it...

...Hardly any college football locker rooms are open following games. USC's is as open as a 24-hour convenience store...

Also, SPY GAMES - Tucson Citizen
[Moore] Go 2 Guy: Breaking news - Seattle P-I
...ESPN and ABC commentator Kirk Herbstreit called Greg Woidneck "the best-kept secret in college football."

Hint: He's a starter but rarely plays for USC, and rarely earns his scholarship...

...This is a hard thing to do when you're the punter for the No. 1 team...

...So what's it like being USC's punter? "It can be hard to stay focused," Woidneck said. "It definitely gets a little lonely and frustrating. But if I'm not punting, it means we're winning."...

...Asked if the staff ever has to wash his uniform, Woidneck said: "I don't know, probably not, especially after the last game. I'm not getting dirty that much."...

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Trojans report: Inside slant - CBS Sportsline
USC is ranked No. 1 in the nation with three convincing victories, but not everything has gone right this season.

The Trojans are dealing with mounting injuries in the secondary -- starting cornerback Josh Pinkard is out for the season with a torn ACL and cornerback Kevin Thomas won't play this season because of a shoulder problem.

Things got worse last week when another cornerback, Cary Harris, suffered a dislocated shoulder. The initial word was that he could miss several weeks. But coach Pete Carroll delivered this message Tuesday: Not so fast, my friends . . .

"What's really going to happen is don't count Cary Harris out,"
said Carroll, whose team plays at Washington on Saturday...

Also, Trojans report: Strategy and personnel - CBS Sportsline
Trojans report: Notes, quotes - CBS Sportsline
Running the Huskies' show - Daily Trojan
....Locker is willing to take responsibility for the offense, even in his first year as a starter. And win or lose against No. 1 USC on Saturday, he will be considered accountable for the outcome.

The Huskies, however, are more than willing to cope with Locker's growing pains, believing that there's more to like than dislike.

"Like any quarterback, he's learning as we go," Willingham said. "But I've been very pleased so far with his learning and how he's handled everything."

Perhaps opposing coaches wish that Willingham's faith in Locker had been shaken by some of Locker's freshman mistakes...

Also, Huskies hope to prevent big plays - the Olympian
[Daschel] UW being dismissed too soon - The Columbian
Wondering weather or not to pick the Trojans? - Eugene Register-Guard
Redshirt freshman Havili is USC's back of all trades - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
He is, to grab an old movie title, the man who wasn't there.

And now he's back.
And the USC offense is changed in countless ways.

He is Stanley Havili, a redshirt freshman the top-ranked Trojans list as their fullback, but who lines up almost everywhere and does just about everything.

"Fullback, of course," the 6-foot-1, 222-pound Salt Lake City native said when asked where he lines up. "And tailback, tight end, slot receiver, wide receiver."

You name it, Havili...plays it...
USC nightmare Mays was once UW fantasy - Tacoma News-Tribune
Imagine this: Taylor Mays picks off a pass and returns it 60 yards for a touchdown much to the delight of a rocking Husky Stadium on Saturday. After scoring, the purple-and-gold-clad Mays gets a hug from teammate Jake Locker – a pair of blossoming stars for UW.

Sorry, Huskies fans. That was only a dream.

Cold reality is that Mays, the one-time standout for O’Dea High in Seattle whose father played at Lincoln High and UW, will be wearing the garnet and gold of Southern California on Saturday and any interceptions he might make are not likely to be celebrated by Locker.

As seniors in 2005, Mays and Locker – who led Ferndale to the state Class 3A championship – were the two most heralded recruits in the state...

Also, Carroll was key to Mays leaving - Seattle Times
One that got away - Everett Herald
USC's Mays returns home - OC Register
Mays eagerly awaits his trip home - LA Times
[Withers] USC's Ellis will be dominating presence - Seattle Times
Better tighten that chinstrap, Juan Garcia. Casey Bulyca and Ryan Tolar, you might want to tie down those shoulder pads extra tight.

You're about to spend three hours Saturday night with a 305-pound medicine ball in cardinal and gold named Sedrick Ellis. Whatever you're getting in that monthly scholarship check, it's not enough.

Sedrick Ellis? The name doesn't carry the familiarity of USC players like John David Booty, or linebackers like Keith Rivers and Rey Maualuga, but there are knowledgeable people around USC football that swear Ellis is the best player on the roster.

Not that recognition will be a problem...

Also, Leaner, Meaner Jackson - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
Back injury sidelines Galippo - OC Register
Linebacker Chris Galippo began his USC career with promise, forcing his way onto special teams as a true freshman, but an injury could cause him to sit out the remainder of the season.

Galippo (Servite High) has been bothered by pain in his lower back since fall camp. In the last few nights it was intense enough to keep him awake at night. He reported it to doctors Wednesday morning and he is awaiting results of an MRI and X-rays.

Galippo said doctors were investigating the possibility of an injury to his sciatic nerve...

Also, Galippo is the latest to be hurt - LA Times
Cushing could miss more than one game - Daily Trojan
Linebacker Brian Cushing will miss USC's game at Washington Saturday and could be out even longer.

Cushing, who sprained his ankle in the season opener against Idaho, re-injured it Saturday against Washington State.

"As of right now, it's still an ankle sprain," Cushing said. "I don't want to push it, because it's obviously not ready."

USC coach Pete Carroll said it's very unlikely Cushing will play against the Huskies...

Also, Sources: USC linebacker Cushing to miss three games - LA Daily News
USC center Spanos nears return from triceps tear - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
Davis is on the receiving end of attention - LA Times
...Davis, a senior from Toledo, Ohio, had never caught more than six passes or gained more than 68 receiving yards in a game until Booty last Saturday turned to him repeatedly. Davis caught nine passes to help the top-ranked Trojans to a 47-14 victory in their Pacific 10 Conference opener. His 124 receiving yards were the most ever by a USC tight end.

"He didn't do anything different from what he normally does," Coach Pete Carroll said. "He just got the ball a lot."

Family and friends have called and text-messaged Davis ever since...

Also, USC looking for long strikes - OC Register

Monday, September 24, 2007

Rivers a good indicator of where USC's going - Inland Empire Press-Enteprise
...the real question for this No. 1 team, in a college football system where only two finishers really matter, is not where it's headed, but whether or not it can get there.

In comparing this team's defense to those of USC's previous two national title teams under Pete Carroll, you start to think that maybe it can.

First of all, a defensive leader stepped up Saturday, and it's only fitting that Keith Rivers, in recording 14 tackles, had the most by a Trojan since Lofa Tatupu's 14 against Oregon in 2003...
Cougars booted by No. 1 Trojans - Seattle Times
Midway through Bill Doba's postgame news conference, the lights went off in the interview tent just outside the Coliseum.

"This is fitting for the night," the Washington State coach quipped.

And with reason.

USC lived up to its No. 1 ranking by thumping Washington State 47-14 in a game Doba aptly described as "an old-fashioned butt-whipping."

Looking bulletproof, the undefeated Trojans (3-0, 1-0 Pac-10) dominated the league opener...

Also, Cougars take big beating - Tacoma News-Tribune
No. 1 USC dominates Cougars - The Columbian
Short, sweet - OC Register
A couple of them looked more like laterals than passes. At times, they required more running from quarterback John David Booty than from his receivers.

No beautiful arcing spirals or sprints down the sideline.

But with a series of short, precise passes in the opening drive of a 47-14 victory over Washington State Saturday night, USC restored something it has coveted for years, but lacked in its first two games: balance.

Booty threw for four touchdowns and 279 yards on 28-of-35 passing, reviving his faded Heisman Trophy hopes and reinvigorating a listless USC passing attack...

Also, Secondary stifles WSU passing attack - Daily Trojan
Passing through rarified air - Daily Trojan
USC shouldn't get carried away - LA Daily News
USC makes another statement with victory - LA Daily News
Slinging a different tune - LA Times
Trojans find the right balance - LA Times
An afterthought no more - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
If USC's young receivers aren't quite ready to be the centerpiece of the passing attack, the Trojans' oft-forgotten tight end made it clear he's capable of playing a larger role.

Fred Davis showcased the soft hands and deceptive speed that made him one of the most coveted high school receivers in the nation a few years ago. The senior caught a career-high nine passes for 124 yards and two touchdowns Saturday night as USC overwhelmed Washington State 47-14 in the Pac-10 opener for both teams.

"It's been a long time coming," Davis said. "I'm trying to help my team any way I can, whether it's blocking or catching the ball. This game was probably a little more catching-the-ball than usual."...

Also, Break out game for USC tight end Davis - LA Daily News
A long time coming for Davis - Daily Trojan
Davis helps tighten up USC's passing game - Daily Breeze

Sunday, September 23, 2007

USC's defense grounds Cougars' air attack - Daily Trojan
After giving up nearly 400 yards passing the previous week, USC knew it would have its hands full against Washington State, which had the Pac-10's second-most potent passing attack entering Saturday's game.

But the Trojans' defensive backs rose to the occasion, holding Cougars' quarterback Alex Brink to a season-low 165 yards passing in USC's 47-14 win at the Coliseum.

Brink was replaced by backup quarterback Gary Rodgers in the beginning of the fourth quarter of the blowout.

"I think this is the best we've played them in the years we've had a chance to go against them," USC coach Pete Carroll said. "We've had a lot of hard times against these guys in years past."...

Also, USC CB Harris sprains shoulder - LA Daily News
USC makes another statement with victory - LA Daily News
USC turns passing game loose in 47-14 win - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
With Booty on target, there are no questions left - LA Times