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USC Quote Of The Day

Lynn Swann recently spoke with Sports Business Daily. He doesn’t usually say much but here is a quote that I think stood out. “I don’t care if you played, coached, owned a football team, if you’ve been an athletic director and the head coach and you’re now the AD. Your job is not to call the plays. You hire someone to call the plays and let that person … Continue reading USC Quote Of The Day

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If It’s Friday, It’s Time For A USC Notes Column

Clay Helton said this week USC linebacker Porter Gustin works from sunrise to sunset since undergoing knee surgery last week for a torn meniscus. Does anyone wonder if this is part of the problem? Gustin’s known for spending a lot of time in the weight room and working out harder than anyone. But he also played in only four games last season and might miss … Continue reading If It’s Friday, It’s Time For A USC Notes Column

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Let’s Compare Some Future Schedules

UCLA announced a home-and-home series with Auburn for 2027 (Rose Bowl) and 2028 (Jordan-Hare Stadium). This again puts some pressure on USC to upgrade its non-conference schedule. Look at the future USC schedules: 2019: Fresno State, BYU, Notre Dame 2020: Alabama, New Mexico, Notre Dame 2021: BYU, Notre Dame 2022: Rice, Fresno State, Notre Dame 2023: BYU, Notre Dame 2025: Fresno State Meanwhile. UCLA has … Continue reading Let’s Compare Some Future Schedules

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Even NFL Coaches Find Some Stats Surprising

I got a call from an NFL coach today who wanted to know if it was true USC’s defense allowed six TD passes in last weekend’s scrimmage? Yes, it did. The coach was surprised to hear it because of all comments from the USC coaching staff about the strength of the defense. And the coach was curious how they secondary could get burned so many … Continue reading Even NFL Coaches Find Some Stats Surprising

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USC Quick Thought

How long has tight end Daniel Imatorbhebhe been injured? He started the final four games last season but missed spring practice because of a “nagging hip injury” according to USC. He was recently medically cleared for some drills but it appears there is no rush to bring him back. “We committed to shutting him down for an extended period of time, and now it’s building … Continue reading USC Quick Thought

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USC Morning Buzz

While the quarterback derby obviously is the primary interest, let’s talk a moment about left tackle. Austin Jackson and Clayton Bradley have shared the position during training camp. Jackson is the heir apparent and enjoyed a strong training camp. But he has not been named the starter. Last season, he and Bradley split time at left tackle when Toa Lobendahn was injured. But really the … Continue reading USC Morning Buzz

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Remembering Red Sanders

Today is the 60th anniversary of the death of former UCLA coach Red Sanders and I’ve been wanting to tell a Sanders story that I recently heard. Back in the 1950’s, newspaper reporters would meet Sanders at Scandia, a landmark restaurant on Sunset Blvd. On some of those days, Sanders would skip practice presumably because he had a bit too much to drink. It was … Continue reading Remembering Red Sanders

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Morning Buzz: No Team Needs Game Ready Receivers More Than USC

You know why it’s important that freshman wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown is already looking ready to go as a big-time receiver this season, just like Robert Woods, Marqise Lee and JuJu Smith-Schuster were during their first training camps? Because Tee Martin doesn’t exactly develop receivers. So USC needs guys like St. Brown, who are game ready their first day of college practice. Have you seen … Continue reading Morning Buzz: No Team Needs Game Ready Receivers More Than USC

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Cornerback Competition Heats Up

Clay Helton said after today’s practice Greg Johnson is giving Isaiah Langley competition for the starting spot at cornerback. Wonder if Langley (No. 24) giving up two touchdowns to Amon-Ra St. Brown (see below) on Saturday had anything to do with it? USC true freshman WR @amonra_stbrown made 3 TD catches in today’s Coliseum scrimmage.@USCCoachHelton: “Ooh, mercy. What a nice day he had today.”#FightOn pic.twitter.com/6dij3BHIET … Continue reading Cornerback Competition Heats Up

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Todd McNair Wants A New Trial

Todd McNair’s lawyers plan to seek a new trial on his defamation claim, according to a legal brief filed today in Los Angeles Superior Court. A jury voted 9-3 in May the NCAA didn’t defame McNair. McNair’s lawyers field a brief Monday that asked HJudge Frederick Shaller to declare a one-year “show-cause” penalty against McNair by the NCAA infractions committee in 2010 to be invalid … Continue reading Todd McNair Wants A New Trial

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USC Morning Buzz: Time To Name Starter?

I spoke to a USC coach this weekend who told me some of the staff wish freshman JT Daniels would be named the starting quarterback now. Why? Because Daniels has clearly been the best quarterback and naming a starter today would end the suspense and allow the team to prepare for the first game with its starting quarterback known. Clay Helton said Saturday he might … Continue reading USC Morning Buzz: Time To Name Starter?

JT Daniels, Amon-Ra St. Brown Shine In USC Scrimmage

USC’s top quarterback and wide receiver appear to be freshmen: JT Daniels completed 10 of 12 passes with four touchdowns and no interceptions while fellow Mater Dei teammate Amon-Ra St. Brown caught three TD passes in the Trojans’ first scrimmage of training camp. “Oooh mercy, what a nice day he had today,” Clay Helton  said of St. Brown. St. Brown is not like the recent batch … Continue reading JT Daniels, Amon-Ra St. Brown Shine In USC Scrimmage

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USC Saturday Buzz

USC will scrimmage today at the Coliseum. Each quarterback will have two drives to showcase their skills. Again, though, the coaches have confidence in JT Daniels. So unless someone else can be better than Daniels, they will have a tough time beating him out. The biggest thing Jack Sears and Matt Fink have going for them is Clay Helton’s cautious nature. Defensive back Jamel Cook, who … Continue reading USC Saturday Buzz

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New USC Title, Heisman Odds

USC’s odds to win are currently 60-1 according to Bovada. That’s actually worse than back in January when USC’s odds were 33-1. Meanwhile, Stephen Carr’s Heisman odds are 100-1. All odds are below: Odds to Win the 2019 CFP National Championship                                     1/9/18               Current Odds (8/9/18) Alabama                       11/4 … Continue reading New USC Title, Heisman Odds

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USC Morning Buzz: Personnel Thoughts

If USC played a game today, here is the starting secondary: Iman Marshall, Ajene Harris and Isaiah Langley at cornerback. Marvell Tell and Bubba Bolden. That’s a solid group but not dominating. Do you disagree? The problem is the hype for the entire defense seems a bit much heading into the season and I mention the secondary because to doesn’t blow anyone away. Maybe if a … Continue reading USC Morning Buzz: Personnel Thoughts

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USC Picture Of The Day

Here are USC players lined up for ABC-TV before playing No. 1-ranked Iowa at the Coliseum in 1961. USC fell behind 21-0 and trailed 35-20 with less than five minutes remaining. USC trailed 35-28 when quarterback Bill Nelsen threw a 5-yard TD pass to wide receiver Hal Bedsole with 48 seconds remaining. The pair connected on a 71-yard TD pass and 2-point conversion to make … Continue reading USC Picture Of The Day

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Interception Update

Jack Sears and Matt Fink threw interceptions today, which makes it even easier for Clay Helton to name JT Daniels the starter. Of course, two years ago Sam Darnold threw far fewer interceptions than Max Browne and it did not matter. But lesson learned. Meanwhile, Porter Gustin was carted off the field after injuring his knee. He tried to walk it off before being taken … Continue reading Interception Update

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Max Nikias Officially Resigns

USC president Max Nikias officially resigned today according to Rick Caruso, chairperson of the Board of Trustees. The interim president will be Wanda Austin, who is a member of the Board of Trustees and former president of the Aerospace Corporation. And now for the aggravating part: Nikias will be inducted as President Emeritus and Life Trustee of the University. Everyone gets a golden parachute at USC. Continue reading Max Nikias Officially Resigns

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USC Morning Buzz: Quarterbacks Always Lead The Way

Although Jack Sears has improved, JT Daniels is the not-at-all surprising leader three days into training camp Have you heard much about Matt Fink? The table is being set for Daniels to start the UNLV game, where he will get a test run and then face the tough road games at Stanford and Texas. Frankly, even if Daniels were not ahead, I think he would … Continue reading USC Morning Buzz: Quarterbacks Always Lead The Way

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USC Afternoon Notes

Linebacker Maninoa Tufono of Honolulu committed to USC. He is a four-star prospect who had 40 offers. Wide receiver Koy Moore is supposed to commit to USC tonight at 6, I’m told. Some former USC players in the news: Wide receiver De’Quan Hampton and offensive lineman Khaliel Rodgers are among the first 100 players to sign with the Alliance of American Football signing with the San Diego … Continue reading USC Afternoon Notes

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If It’s Friday, It’s Time For A Notes Column

USC opens training camp today at Howard Jones Field. The first practice is almost always uneventful. They are not bad nor does anyone really stand out significantly in first practices. They are mainly a way to set the tone for the camp with the energy level and pace the most important things to keep an eye on. it also will be more important once full … Continue reading If It’s Friday, It’s Time For A Notes Column

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With Training Camp About To Start, Remember Playcalling

Former USC QB coach Tyson Helton, now the offensive coordinator at Tennessee, said today he received a text message from USC offensive coordinator Tee Martin that read, “I’m pulling for you.” Martin, of course, is a former Tennessee quarterback. But it would be a lot more interesting if Martin sent him a text saying, “Will someone else call the pass plays like at USC?” Or … Continue reading With Training Camp About To Start, Remember Playcalling

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USC Ranked No. 15 In Coaches’ Poll

Talk about predictable. Everyone talks about USC being a top 15 team and that is exactly where the Trojans are ranked in the first coaches’ poll. This poll would be a lot more interesting if the coaches made their ballot public. Clay Helton is once again a voter. All the voters and the poll are below.   1. Alabama (61 first-place votes) 2. Clemson (3) … Continue reading USC Ranked No. 15 In Coaches’ Poll

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USC Morning Buzz: Thursday Notes

Will Ohio State coach Urban Meyer’s final game be the Cotton Bowl victory over USC? Meyer is on paid administrative leave at Ohio State following a report Meyer knew about a domestic violence incident involving a former Buckeyes assistant in 2015. The game seems to have made a lasting impact on USC. Porter Gustin said at Pac-12 media day the Trojans were not as big, … Continue reading USC Morning Buzz: Thursday Notes

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The Backwards Nature Of Recruiting

Several players already committed to USC — cornerback Chris Steele, wide receiver Drake London, wide receiver Munir McClain — announced today they were officially offered by USC. Say what? If they committed then they were previously offered a scholarship, right? Or is this some new social media thing, where you get an “official” offer after you commit, so you have one more thing to brag … Continue reading The Backwards Nature Of Recruiting

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Les Moonves’ Name Temporarily Removed From Media Center

I mentioned a couple days ago the awkward situation created by the fact CBS CEO Les Moonves has his name on the USC journalism media center at Annenberg Hall. Now Moonves and his wife, Julie Chen, have asked for their names to be removed. ”In recognition of the sensitivities surrounding recent allegations against Mr. Moonves, he and Ms. Chen have requested that USC Annenberg temporarily … Continue reading Les Moonves’ Name Temporarily Removed From Media Center

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USC Faculty Wants Max Nikias To Formally Resign

It’s been two months since USC announced school president Max Nikias would step down but many faculty members are wondering why it’s taking so long as the fall semester starts in three weeks. More than 670 faculty members signed a letter calling for a “formal resignation.” The faculty is concerned that no interim president has been named and almost nothing has been said about a … Continue reading USC Faculty Wants Max Nikias To Formally Resign

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Another USC Donor In The News

You know about the medical school scandal. And the health center scandal. And Cinema School rejecting a $5 million donation from Harvey Weinstein. Let’s remember that CBS CEO Les Moonves, recently accused of sexual misconduct by six women, has his name on the 20,000-square foot media center at the Wallis Annenberg Center. His wife, Julie Chen, and CBS also have their name on the center. Continue reading Another USC Donor In The News

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USC Morning Buzz: Larry Scott Defends Pac-12

Pac-12 media day always features commissioner Larry Scott making some comments that defy common sense. Here was Scott on the Pac-12’s 1-8 bowl record: “A handful of season-ending games are not an indicator of a conference’s overall strength.” Nine games might be a handful but eight losses are not, unless you are an awful football program. More importantly, is that Scott’s takeaway from the bowl … Continue reading USC Morning Buzz: Larry Scott Defends Pac-12

USC Morning Buzz

One of the big takeaways from yesterday’s Coliseum media tour was that 1,000 parking spaces have been eliminated because of construction on the George Lucas Art Museum. But I’m more disappointed in the new Coliseum seats. I had seen samples last year that showed bigger seats or more comfortable looking seats. Or seats with cup holders. But apparently those are the seats for the more … Continue reading USC Morning Buzz