Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Happiness Is a Warm Football Coach - NY Times [Play Magazine]
...the guy who runs his Web site, said if I came onto the field during warm-ups I could run up the tunnel and into the locker room with the team so I could hear the pregame talk. I’ll admit it was a thrill. I was a U.S.C. fan in my youth. I loved all those great running backs...Now I was going to run through the Coliseum with the Cardinal and Gold. As I did, I didn’t even realize Carroll was behind me until a security guy tried to stop me at the entrance to the team’s dressing room.

“He’s with us,” Carroll said. “I don’t even know why I’m saying that, but he’s with us.” He punched me on the arm, perhaps for the third or fourth time that day. He was like a kid, all excited. It was game day...

...they gathered around him in a huge huddle, I was thinking, I’m glad I’m not an Oregon Duck...

Monday, September 22, 2008

Rey Maualuga keeps hits coming for USC - Portland Oregonian
..."I want people to fear me," says USC middle linebacker Rey Maualuga.

Fear may be too strong a word, but the 6-foot-2, 260-pound Maualuga has the undivided attention of every team the No. 1-ranked Trojans play.

When coaches prepare for USC, they must account for No.58.

Or start warming up their backup quarterback.

"Oh, my," is the immediate reaction of Oregon State coach Mike Riley when asked, "What do you think about Rey Maualuga?"

"Scary," said Riley...

Also, [Ledin] PRO: Will USC go undefeated in football this season? - VC Star
[Lassen] CON: Will USC go undefeated in football this season? - VC Star

Thursday, September 18, 2008

[The Quad] SEC Notebook: Remembering 2003 - NY Times
There is some serious bluster going on around the Southeastern Conference this week...

...remember what happened the last time the Trojans showed up in SEC territory.

It was 2003. 23-0. Over Auburn. On the Plains. In the heat.

That was an Auburn team that had the nucleus of the group that went 13-0 in 2004. It was a young team, but U.S.C. also started a young quarterback, Matt Leinart...

...until an SEC team gets even with the Trojans on a national stage, that 23-0 is hanging out there, a bright red flag of a reminder...

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

[Waldner] Former Redondo standout Ellison quick to make imprint - Daily Breeze
...Name the quickest player on the USC football team.

Quick now.

No doubt Joe McKnight is on the top of your list. You saw the way he quick-stepped around the Ohio State defense for 105 rushing yards.

Actually, Kevin Ellison goes to the head of the line...

..."He's so smart," Seto said. "He's the glue who holds our defense together."

Great attitude. Great leader. Great awareness on the field. Great player.

"He leads by example," Seto said. "He's in the film room...all the time...

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Goal Line Stand: Only USC can match SEC - Athlon Sports
...It remains to be seen whether the Trojans will win the national title. With 10 games remaining, nothing can be guaranteed, especially when upsets are happening more frequently, and keeping collegians motivated and focused for four-plus months is more challenging these days than preventing a brokerage house from failing. Plenty of pitfalls remain on the schedule, although after watching Maryland dump Cal, UNLV knock off Arizona State, and UCLA hold BYU under 60 in a 59-0 disgrace, it’s hard to imagine a Pac-10’s all-star outfit coming within two touchdowns of the Trojans. But you never know.

The relative weakness of the Pac-10, the Big Ten’s seeming sag, the ACC’s hopeless devotion to basketball, and the Big East’s regression to a mid-major conference underscore USC’s overwhelming might. Although the Big 12 might put up a moderate stink, championship football is played these days in only one locale (save Troy): the Southeastern Conference...

Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Best (And Worst) College Football Coaches For The Buck - Forbes
...At the head of the money class is University of Southern California head coach Pete Carroll, who pulled in a $4.4 million salary last year, including $400,000 in benefits and deferred compensation. Was he worth it?...

...To draw a fair comparison, we included only the 65 coaches from schools in the six major conferences,...as well as...Notre Dame...Coaches who negotiated new deals for more money during the most recent off-season were excluded.

...By our count, Carroll delivered more than his money’s worth. He has led USC to a 34-5 record since 2005 (including the 2007 and 2008 Rose Bowl titles), a record that is 54% better than the median coach in our analysis. As a result, Carroll scores a 114, meaning college football’s highest earning coach was 14% underpaid.

Also, The Most Valuable College Football Teams - Forbes
Champion Factories - Forbes

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Comparisons to Leinart don't faze Mater Dei QB Barkley - OC Register
If Matt Barkley's been asked it once, he's been asked it a thousand times: “What's it like to be compared to Matt Leinart?”...

...The question comes as no surprise to Barkley or anyone else. The similarities between the two go far beyond the obvious shared first name, becoming somewhat eerie when laid out in order.

Both have played starting quarterback for Mater Dei, with Leinart leading his team to a CIF Division I co-Championship in 1999 and Barkley guiding the Monarchs to a No. 1 state ranking during the 2007 season.

Both will be Trojans, as long as Barkley...keeps his commitment to USC. Leinart helped lead the cardinal and gold to back-to-back national championships and captured a Heisman Trophy in the process...

Also, Barkley wins national award - OC Register
USC foes will be 'Maualugaed' - ESPN
...Maualuga is a uniter, not a divider. If a person appreciates football distilled to its most basic essence -- knocking the pooh out of another guy -- then it's simply impossible to not like Maualuga...

...That's why a Maualuga neologism found its way into the online Urban Dictionary: Maualugaed. Defined as: "In football, it is used to describe when a player is absolutely destroyed by a hit. A reference to USC linebacker Rey Maualuga. Pronounced: mao-uh-loo-guhd."

And as used in a sentence: "Dude, did you just see the Michigan QB get completely maualugaed? I'm surprised he can still walk!"...
[Burlison] USC won't play for title, Sporting News says - Long Beach Press-Telegram
...How dominant will Coach Pete Carroll's USC defense be this season?

Five members of the magazine's 11-player first-team All-Pac-10 defense are Trojans, the most notable of those, of course, being the conference's best player, linebacker Ray Maualuga.

How uncertain is the status of the USC offense?

Just one of the 11 players tabbed as first-team all-conference offense selections, sophomore Joe McKnight, is a Trojan...

Friday, May 30, 2008

No. 4 USC Trojans - Athlon Sports
...For all of the overabundance of high school phenoms flocking to USC during the Pete Carroll era, the most important player on the 2008 roster might be a transfer from Arkansas. Damian Williams, a five-game starter for the Razorbacks as a true freshman in ’06, could stir up a wide receiver corps that underperformed spectacularly last fall...

...This is the year Ohio State has been targeting for a national title, and the Trojans will host the Buckeyes in Game 2. In the even-year rotation, USC will host Notre Dame and travel across town to UCLA in the final two games.

The new standard: USC is riding a six-year streak of 11-win seasons and has played in six consecutive BCS bowls — both NCAA records.

The Man: Carroll is the nation’s winningest active coach at 84.4 percent...

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

USC's Pete Carroll trapped by new recruiting rules - LA Times
..."I feel like that kid in 'Disturbia,' " Carroll said last week.

Kale Brecht, the fictional 17-year-old played by actor Shia LaBeouf...wore a court-ordered ankle bracelet that forbade him from traveling outside a 100-foot perimeter of his home.

Carroll can relate...And he is not the only road-hungry football coach shackled by the NCAA.

The so-called "Saban Rule" was reportedly adopted this year after Alabama's Nick Saban, another relentless recruiter, was accused of violating NCAA regulations that prohibit in-person contact with high school players during the spring evaluation period. The legislation, sponsored by the [SEC], sidelines all head coaches from April 15 to the end of May...

Friday, May 23, 2008

[Griffin] Young, Bush among select group of iconic talents - ESPN
...the individual players who helped shape and define the last 10 seasons...

...2. Reggie Bush: ...Pete Carroll gave him a tape of Gale Sayers when he arrived at college. Bush spent the next three seasons emulating and eventually bettering the accomplishments of the iconic running back...

...3. Matt Leinart: ...His team won a share of two national championships and played for another one. Life is pretty good for a successful quarterback at Southern California, so it's no surprise that Leinart wanted to stretch his college career as long as possible...

Thursday, May 22, 2008

[Miller] Trojans had no BCS peer once Carroll arrived - ESPN
...As for the perception that the Pac-10 has become USC and the nine dwarfs during the BCS Era, that's a recent phenomenon. From 1995 to 2001, seven different teams went to the Rose Bowl as Pac-10 champions (or co-champions). In 2000 and 2002, the conference produced two BCS participants.

Of course, 2002 was the first year one of those teams was USC, which was enjoying coach Pete Carroll's second season. The Trojans dynasty emerged and has yet to face a consistent challenge, even though six of its eight losses over the past six seasons have come against conference foes.

This dominance has made USC a national villain, and Hansen is quick to point out that the BCS has advanced college football...to a national fascination, where every game in the regular season is meaningful...

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

O gets his man - Jackson Clarion-Ledger
For better or worse, ex-Ole Miss coach Ed Orgeron has wasted no time making his imprint on the New Orleans Saints.

Orgeron's influence was evident early in Saturday's NFL draft when the Saints traded up three places to the seventh pick and selected Sedrick Ellis, a defensive tackle Orgeron recruited to Southern Cal five years ago.

My take: This move was definitely for the better. Ellis, a 300-pounder with uncommon quickness for a man so huge, should make an immediate impact...

..."Sedrick is very explosive, very versatile," Orgeron said. "He's an outstanding pass rusher, very tough. He's also an outstanding young man who will be a great guy in our locker room."...

Also, Saints get one of their men - New Orleans Times-Picayune
Saints trade up, draft Ellis - New Orleans Times-Picayune
Booty, Vikings see move as good fit - Minneapolis Star-Tribune
Vikings coach Brad Childress never has hidden his desire to have a quality developmental quarterback. If that guy happens to be the son of a football coach, all the better.

John David Booty fit the profile so well, at least in the Vikings' minds, that they made a trade with archrival Green Bay...

..."You could see many of the throws that we have within this offense, you could see him operate and do [at USC]," Childress said. "So that was intriguing to us. ... He comes from a coaching family, has had brothers that have played, so all those things factor in, and then obviously his production. We felt like his value where we got him there was too good to pass up."...

Also, USC coach on John David Booty - Minneapolis Star-Tribune
On USC and JBD (John David Booty) - Minneapolis Star-Tribune
USC's Carroll knows QBs, and praises Booty's talent - Minneapolis Star-Tribune
[Walters] Edina teammate calls Booty 'a leader' - St Paul Pioneer Press
Minnesota Vikings give Booty a shot - St Paul Pioneer Press
Booty correct about Minnesota - New Orleans Times-Picayune
Booty's wish does come true - LA Times
Rivers a character guy - Cincy Enquirer
Sitting in a hotel suite in his hometown of Lake Mary, Fla., Keith Rivers received a phone call from Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis to let him know the team had taken him with the ninth pick in the first round.

Then Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer, a fellow Southern Cal Trojan, made a call to welcome the linebacker to Cincinnati.

"He said it's a great organization and an excellent city, and said I'm what they need," Rivers said of his conversation with Palmer. "He said they have a lot of offense and need a little help on defense. I want to come in and help and do everything I can to help us get to the playoffs."

The selection of Rivers pleased Palmer...

Also, Rivers brings leadership to Bengals - Cincy Enquirer
Bengals bamboozled in first round - Cincy Enquirer
Someone to build D around - Cincy Enquirer
Palmer happy to have USC star join Cincinnati - Dayton Daily News
Seahawks' top pick Lawrence Jackson is fond of Seattle - Seattle Times
Lawrence Jackson loves Seattle. And not just because the Seahawks made the defensive end from USC their first-round pick on Saturday.

He really loves Seattle. He can't wait to walk around Pike Place Market. He told NFL coaches from other teams that his ideal spot would be — you guessed it — right here. He likes the rain, yet he's from Southern California. He wanted to live here even when he was in high school...

..."This is the place that I wanted to be," Jackson said Monday at his first news conference as a Seahawk..."I've been telling people for months leading up to the draft, even years, that after football is over with, I'm going to go move to Seattle. So to be here is a blessing, to have this opportunity to play in the city."...

Also, Rivals come together - Seattle P-I
Baker had a feeling about Falcons - Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Southern California left tackle Sam Baker had an inkling that he would be drafted by the Falcons.

"I had a feeling that I was going to go there, but I thought I was going to go with one of those second-round picks," said Baker, who visited the Falcons on April 7. "My only other visit was with the Redskins and I think they had the pick."...

...Baker's father has been a guiding light throughout the process.

"He said, don't let your draft position change who you are," Baker said. "You know, if you are the first pick or the last pick, don't let it change who you are."...

Also, Falcons took low-key approach to rebuilding - Atlanta Journal-Constitution
What we learned from the Falcons' draft - Atlanta Journal-Constitution
[King] Reviewing Falcons' picks - CNNSI

Monday, April 28, 2008

Fred Davis Is Bone Crusher - Washington Post
...Nicknames? Yeah, the man has nicknames. Mom Margo Davis says he was once known as "Bone Crusher," because he he broke a kid's arm in youth football.

"We used to take him to practice and they didn't want to play, it was like, 'Oh no, here comes Fred,' " Margo said. "When the kids would see him they'd run in the opposite direction."

* In high school, he was known as "Freddy Franchise," according to his brother, because he played so many different positions.

* Davis's take on these nicknames? "They over there making stuff up," he said of his brother and mother...

Also, Redskins Welcome Three Pass-Catchers - WJLA-TV
Redskins on the Receiving End - Washington Times
Redskins a good fit for Davis - Toledo Blade
USC’s Davis plays waiting game - Toledo Blade
Big draft day for local football talent - Vacaville Reporter
The waiting was hard for Thomas Williams. The waiting after he knew something was brewing was even harder.

The former Vacaville High School star and USC standout was the 155th overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft, going in the fifth round to the Jacksonville Jaguars. He got the good news while in Sacramento spending an eventful afternoon with his mother and grandparents.

"I found out about 25 to 30 minutes before my name ran along the bottom of the screen," Williams said. "They called me to make sure they could get a hold of me, to make sure I'd be able to practice, and to let me know when minicamp would be.

"Then they told me they'd call me back in 15 to 20 minutes...

Also, Jacksonville Jaguars select Williams on 2nd day of NFL Draft - Orlando Sentinel
Another winning Saturday for USC in NFL draft - LA Times
...A school-record seven Trojans were selected in the first two rounds. That eclipsed the previous mark of five, set in 1968 and 2006.

USC Coach Pete Carroll envisioned this type of NFL payoff...

..."what we hoped was to make the mark of having four or five guys in the first round," Carroll said. "That's what we had seen was possible when schools have a good run. We're right in the middle of that"...

...On a day when no other school had more than two players taken in the first round, four Trojans heard their names called: defensive tackle Sedrick Ellis (seventh to New Orleans), linebacker Keith Rivers (ninth to Cincinnati), tackle Sam Baker (21st to Atlanta) and defensive end Lawrence Jackson (28th to Seattle)...

Also, Trojans cash-in on NFL draft day with decision to stay in school - LA Times
USC is one of the top suppliers of NFL talent - OC Register
USC football players dominate NFL Draft - OC Register
Four Trojans selected as first-round picks - Daily Trojan
NFL takes liking to USC's talent - Desert Sun
USC is special, Pro Day or draft day - Minneapolis Star-Tribune
USC trend continues, but will SEC's? - Mobile Press-Register
How to Run a 4.2 - WSJ

Friday, April 25, 2008

Rainiers slugger Clement looks like answer for Mariners - Tacoma News-Tribune
Three years ago, after the Mariners made Jeff Clement the No. 3 overall selection of the most precociously gifted class in the history of the amateur draft, a Baseball America scouting report on the University of Southern California catcher touted his “light-tower power,” his “short, compact left-handed swing,” and his “outstanding makeup.”

The magazine also noted Clement’s improved “set up, mechanics, blocking and arm speed.”

Former general manager Pat Gillick, then working as a Mariners consultant, wasn’t as sold on Clement’s defense...

...The ambitious overhaul of Clement’s mechanics has produced the top all-around catching prospect in baseball...

Also, Former USC star Clement waiting for his chance - LA Times
Clement improving behind the plate - Seattle P-I
Shattered Dreams - Arizona Republic
Serving up pizza and iced tea to hungry folks at her parents' restaurant in Prescott is not where Kalyn Keller pictured herself...

...Kalyn, a graduate of Arcadia High School, and student at the University of Southern California, competed in the 2004 Summer Games in Athens, Greece...

..."The last thing you're thinking of going into a big competition is I wonder what the bad bacteria count in this water is. You expect that all these things have been discussed and taken care of before."

Kalyn was diagnosed with Crohn's, a chronic inflammatory bowel disease of the intestines...

Thursday, April 24, 2008

USC is one of the top suppliers of NFL talent - OC Register
...This year's Pro Day was like a Middle Eastern bazaar. Teams could find almost anything they wanted, from a strong-armed quarterback (John David Booty) to a menacing nose tackle (Sedrick Ellis).

Saturday's draft will have a heavy USC flavor: Three Trojans are viewed as likely first-rounders; six are projected to go among the first 60 picks. USC sent more players to this year's Senior Bowl (nine) and to the NFL scouting combine (12) than any other school...

...The fact that you can debate which USC class will have the biggest NFL impact is pleasant news for Carroll. He inherited a program that averaged three drafted players a year and now gets an average of nearly seven players taken...
[Myers] AFL boss pushes son for NFL draft - NY Daily News
...The NFL draft is always full of family affairs and this year's story is about one commissioner waiting to hear another call out his son's name.

"Commissioner (Roger) Goodell has been a long-time friend," said David Baker, the commissioner of the Arena Football League. "I always told him, 'I sure hope you can handle Sammy's name.' Sam Baker is pretty easy."

Although Sam Baker's stock dropped after a senior year at USC that was marred by rib and hamstring injuries, the 6-5, 309-pound left tackle is still projected to be drafted in the second round Saturday. One GM said Baker could be moved inside to play guard.

David Baker would love to hear Goodell announcing his son's selection because that means he's a first-round pick...

Monday, April 21, 2008

It's a 'tankless' job - Cincy Enquirer
Pro Football Weekly's 2008 NFL Draft Guide describes Southern Cal defensive tackle Sedrick Ellis as being "built like a tank with broad shoulders and a powerful base."

Ellis, one of the top two tackles in the draft and a player many mock drafts say will end up with the Bengals with the ninth overall pick, enthusiastically concurs with the "tank" assessment.

He carries 309 pounds on a frame that is just a shade taller than 6 feet.

"A lot of people like taller tackles, but I think my height is just great," Ellis said at the NFL Scouting Combine in February. "You get these big 6-5 (offensive) linemen, and I can get up underneath them and uproot them out of what they're trying to do. Great (foot) work, great hands and the leverage I think works to my advantage a lot."...

Also, INTERIOR DECIMATOR - New Orleans Times-Picayune
USC DT Ellis on Ravens' draft radar - Baltimore Sun
USC tackle prominent on wish list for defense - Columbus Dispatch
Ellis feels he already belongs - Inland Empire Press Enterprise
Elite Trojan - St Louis Post-Dispatch
At the end of last season, Southern California coach Pete Carroll referred to Keith Rivers as the "model Trojan." More precisely, Rivers proved to be the model Trojans linebacker.

Only the best USC linebackers get to wear jersey No. 55. Rivers joined the ranks of Willie McGinest, Junior Seau and Chris Claiborne in wearing that number for the Trojans.

"That's a big tradition," Rivers said. "Great linebackers have worn it and made it proud. I was honored to have it, and tried to do my best to live up to it."....

Also, Rivers is ready to join club - Boston Globe
Linebacker Rivers does No. 55 proud - Cincy Enquirer
Bengals could land USC's Rivers - Dayton Daily News
USC linebacker Keith Rivers - Detroit Free Press
USC has top linebacker - Deseret News
Rivers rising - Arizona Republic
'Bionic eye' offers grandmother the chance to enjoy a view of the future - The Scotsman
..."I can shoot baskets with my grandson. And I can see my granddaughter dancing across the stage. It's wonderful."

The technology is being developed by Dr Mark Humayun, professor of ophthalmology and biomedical engineering at the Doheny Eye Institute in Los Angeles, California.

He said developments in improving the sight of people with blindness were now moving fast.

His team have now developed a camera so small and powerful that it could be put inside the patient's eye, rather than worn on a pair of glasses...

Also, World's First True Bionic Eye - Sky News

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Youth served at USC Huddle - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
...Despite the score, the Huddle's emerging star had to be redshirt freshman Chris Galippo...All the 235-pound middle linebacker from Corona (Anaheim Servite High School) did was make a game-high nine tackles, with six for losses including three sacks, and two fumble recoveries...

...Galippo wasn't the lone redshirt freshman to shine. Quarterback Aaron Corp had a spectacular day, showing far more than simply the final, game-winning scoring pass he threw from 25 yards out to Travon Patterson. On the day, Corp completed 13 of 16 for 158 yards and two touchdowns.

Again, he wasn't alone...

Also, Patton: Search for Next USC Heisman Winner Begins - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
USC's Sanchez strengthens his grip on starting job - LA Times
USC quarterback Corp impressive in final spring scrimmage - LA Daily News
Sanchez has 3 touchdowns in final scrimmage of spring - OC Register
Williams Excels In USC Intrasquad Game - Springdale Morning News
Booty proves his ability - Shreveport Times
As one of the most recruited prep quarterbacks in the nation, John David Booty was thrust into the fervor of college football recruiting. Booty's early enrollment at Southern California became the topic du jour on sports talk shows, TV and radio, across the country.

But, it's nothing like the process he's faced leading up to next weekend's NFL Draft. His future isn't in his hands, deciding which school is best suited for him. It's all up to NFL coaches, scouts and general managers, who analyze a variety of numbers — height, weight, 40 time, bench press, Wonderlic scores.

"You almost feel hopeless, and that's the weirdest thing about it," Booty said...
[Streeter] USC's Carroll reaches out to the streets - LA Times
...Few know that about twice a month Carroll leaves his comfy digs at USC, hops in the back of a beaten Camry driven by a former gang member and heads to South L.A. neighborhoods where the snap of gunfire and the anguish of death occur with the steady regularity of a metronome.

These are not recruiting visits. He's trying to save lives.

Most often, he arrives near midnight and walks shadowy streets with that familiar, electric strut, surrounded by little boys, grandparents, crack heads and gang toughs. He empathizes, listens, encourages, laughs. He talks about jobs and kids and marriage, about perspective and courage, about how difficult it must be to be caught in the madness of the streets.

He realizes that some might think he's a fool...

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Exhibition celebrates centennial of Gamble House - Pasadena Star-News
The year was 1908. Henry Ford introduced his Model T. Admiral Peary set sail for the North Pole. William Howard Taft won the White House, and in Pasadena architects Charles and Henry Greene broke ground for what would become the masterpiece of the Arts and Crafts Movement in America, the Gamble House.

Commissioned by Mary and David Gamble of Cincinnati, heir to the Procter & Gamble fortune, the mansion became the winter residence for two generations of Gambles. At one time, the family contemplated selling the house, but soon reneged when the potential buyers mentioned painting the magnificent hand-rubbed woodwork white "to brighten it up." Knowing its architectural significance, the family retained the property until 1966 when they deeded it to the city of Pasadena in a joint agreement with the USC School of Architecture. It was designated a National Historical Landmark in 1977 and underwent a major restoration in 2004...

Friday, April 18, 2008

USC coaching continuity keys strong spring camp - Inland Empire Press-Enterprise
It was one of those moments scripted as if by a comedy writer with an equal sense of timing -- and irony.

The day UCLA's football players went "over the wall" and skipped out the gate to blow off practice while coaches fumed, USC may have had its best practice of the Pete Carroll era.

CBS' Craig James said he'd never seen a team hit, especially one not in full pads, and compete the way the Trojans did. Ditto for Sports Illustrated's Stewart Mandel, who's been coming to see USC work out for four or five years.

Maybe there is something to having a coaching staff that for the first time in Carroll's seven seasons hasn't turned over, not a single spot...
SC’s Keith Rivers hopes to follow long line of Trojan greats in the NFL - KC Star
The jersey number at the University of Southern California is handed down from one player to the next as if it were a family heirloom.

No. 55.

It went from Junior Seau to Willie McGinest to Chris Claiborne to … Keith Rivers.

Seau, Claiborne and Rivers were All-American linebackers. And Seau, Claiborne and McGinest were first-round picks in the NFL draft, a legacy Rivers hopes to continue.

“That’s a big tradition,” Rivers acknowledged at the NFL scouting combine. “Great linebackers have worn it and made it proud. I was honored to have it and tried to do my best to live up to it.”...

Also, Rivers proves he can drive 55 - Detroit News
Keith's Journals - Yardslice.com
[Mandel] Sanchez expected to continue USC's long line of excellence at QB - CNNSI
...Carroll and Sarkisian decreed that fourth-year junior Mark Sanchez had performed impressively enough in that environment to officially earn the Trojans' starting job, and on this day, Sanchez clearly looks like a No. 1 guy both in performance and demeanor. With the pocket collapsing around him on one play, Sanchez laces a throw to Vidal Hazelton across the middle, eliciting a roar from coaches and teammates behind him and causing the ever-excitable Carroll to start racing down the field while marking a first-down signal. (Everyone runs at USC practices, even the guys holding the down-and-distance chains).

When it's time for one of his fellow quarterbacks, Mitch Mustain or Aaron Corp, to take their reps, the 6-foot-3, 225-pound Sanchez is the most vocal cheerleader on the sideline. "C'mon Garrett, let's see what you got,"...All the while, he sports a mile-wide smile, high-fiving and joking with teammates...
USC defensive tackle Sedrick Ellis is a beast who’s a beauty - KC Star
Of all the awards and trophies handed out in college football, this may be the most obscure.

But to USC defensive tackle Sedrick Ellis, it was the most cherished.

Ellis was a two-time winner of the Morris Trophy, which goes to the best lineman in the Pacific-10. It’s not the Heisman Trophy or the Outland Trophy or the Lombardi Award, nor is it determined by a vote of the media or the coaches.

What makes the Morris Trophy so special to Ellis is that it is voted on by the league’s starting offensive linemen.

“I hold it in high regard as one of the best awards because it’s voted on by your peers, by the people you play against,” Ellis said...
Lockwood candidate for BHS grid job - Boulder Daily Camera
...the job of Boulder High head football coach apparently is still a pretty coveted one.

Coveted enough anyway to attract the interest of one of the biggest prep football names the city has produced.

The Camera has learned that former Fairview High running back Scott Lockwood has applied to become BHS' next coach.

Lockwood was a Parade All-American for the Knights in the mid-1980s before playing collegiately at USC and spending three seasons in the NFL...

Friday, April 04, 2008

Pro Day Risers and Sliders - CNNSI
Chauncey Washington, RB, USC...

...the star of USC's pro-day...Washington's performance solidified him as a top-75 pick and there's a good chance he could break into the second round.

Keith Rivers, OLB, USC

...every bit the part of being a top 10 choice...looked terrific in position drills...

...Sam Baker, OL, USC

...looked slow and sluggish during pro-day...he has little opportunity to play tackle in the NFL...

...Chilo Rachal, G, USC
...looked stiff, unathletic and out of shape...

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Laurinaitis, Maualuga highlight candidates for Lombardi Award - Lindy's Sports
The preseason Rotary Lombardi Award list is out and 54 players are among those on the watch list...

...The Rotary Lombardi Award goes annually to the college football lineman -- offense or defense -- who...best exemplifies the discipline of Vince Lombardi.

Eligibility for the Rotary Lombardi Award is limited to down linemen and those defensive players who line up within five yards of the football. The candidates earned a place on the preliminary watch list by earning All-American honors or by being named to their respective all-conference first team as selected by the conference's head coaches.

The preliminary watch list for the upcoming 2008 season are as follows:...Rey Maualuga, LB, Southern California...
Agent Guy McElwaine dies at 71 - Variety
Guy McElwaine, long one of Hollywood's top agents and studio execs, died Wednesday in Los Angeles...He was 71.

McElwaine was a founding partner of International Creative Management and served as a VP of production at Warner Bros., president of Columbia Pictures and, most recently, as prexy of Morgan Creek Productions...

...McElwaine was an L.A. native who attended USC and played baseball professionally out of college. He began his showbiz career as a manager and publicist, working with clients such as Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland, Warren Beatty, The Righteous Brothers and The Mamas and the Papas...
OBITUARY: Tennis player ranked among best in world - Sarasota Herald-Tribune
There was no mistaking Roger Knapp's tennis prowess. By the age of 6, he had already claimed victory in the 10-and-under division of a city championship while growing up in Des Moines, Iowa.

Knapp, 48, who suffered a fatal heart attack Sunday, was a high school and college tennis standout who went on to become one of the top 150 players worldwide by 1985. That same year he beat one of the top 10 players, Henri Leconte, at a tournament in Bristol, England.

After leaving the pro tour the following year, Knapp coached at his alma mater, the University of Southern California, and later at Drake University in Des Moines, where he helped the tennis team reach the NCAA tournament in 1992 for the first time in the school's history.

"That was a monumental achievement," said a friend...

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Jaguar Jon - Lake Oswego Review
They called him “Jaguar Jon.”

At 5-11 and 195 pounds, he was the complete package as a halfback in the 1950s, making All-American at [USC]...

...He had great speed, elusiveness and a highly unusual acrobatic ability...He had an incredible talent for making defenders zag while he zigged...

...now Jon Arnett makes Lake Oswego his home, even though for almost his entire life he was the quintessential Southern California glamour football player.

“I went to grammar school, junior high school, high school, USC and the Rams, all within a 5 mile radius,” Arnett said. “I was really a Southern California person.

“Now you couldn’t get me to go back there.”...