Reader E-mail Of The Day

“Matt Barkley will go into the record book at USC, atop many categories.  But I will remember him for what he did not do, such as beating Stanford, and for interceptions, and for an inability to win.  Yes he had some great victories — but fewer, frankly, than he should have had.
“How many times did he have a chance to win a close game, late . . . only to screw up somehow. He has one more chance to shine. He will not have a chance in whatever podunk bowl USC winds up in.”
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  • Ben Factor

    Can’t help but speculate what happened this year. Repeated misunderstandings with WRs, sailing throws in key downs.

    I saw an article by an informed talent assessor (at least the NY Times consults him) stating that MB is a rhythm passer with a moderate arm. The writer said MB’s strengths remind him of Matt Ryn. He thinks MB will be a good pro in system that is redesigned to emphasize shorter passes that thrown more quickly time after the snap. He doesn’t think MB is a franchise QB, who can adapt and progress in any system.

    That’s because MB does worse than some when his rhythm is disrupted by pressure, and he has to throw quickly without perfect mechanics. MB loses more accuracy and velocity than some when he is not perfectly set and able to employ perfect mechanics.

    I’m not sure whether that fully explains all the problems. MB has sailed passes when he had time to use perfect mechanics. It also sounds as though MB fails to understand the limitations of his arm. Thus, under pressure and not in balance to use best biomechanics to maximize his pass, , MB attempts a pass that requires great placement and/or velocity, when he should know that he can’t use the biomechanics that HE personally needs to use, and should just throw it away or check down to an easier pass.

    If this analysis is correct, it’s fair to ask whether Kiffin, the OC, designed his game plans correctly? I’m not saying he didn’t do so–I don’t know. Logic would dictate that Kiffin needed to assess the pass rush of each opponent, and for those who would hurry MB, stick to shorter passes thrown quickly after the snap, in perfect balance. On rollouts, the passes had to be forgiving of accuracy and velocity.

    Certainly, Kiffin may have relied on bubble screens because of MB, but they became too predictable, and Kiffin needed counter-moves, different short passes that relied on opponents’ expecting the bubble screens. Obviously, if the writer is correct, MB’s arm strength was a limitation that opponents could exploit, but Kiffin had to scheme around that as best he could.

    It also fell on Kiffin to educate MB about MB’s limitations, and teach him how to use that knowledge in making good choices during the game when he couldn’t use best biomechanics. It also fell on Kiffin to clear up all those misunderstandings between Barkley and the WRs.

    Kiffin, MB, both? Who knows? The INTs confirm that something was not figured out correctly.

    I guess if MB can aspire to be Matt Ryan, things could be worse. I’d like to see him do well, with a coordinator who knows MB’s strengths and weaknesses, and gets the most out of him. Kiffin gets at best a “C” grade for that in 2012, and against stronger opponents, a “D” grade. Show me a loss, and I’ll show you INTs by MB, and fumbles by the other skill players.

    MB probably won’t play vs. Notre Dame. That gives Kiffin a free game, without pressure to succeed. Will the team just take the week off? It will be interesting to see how that plays out with a first-time starter against such a good defense.

    One might expect Wittek to struggle more with the pass rush, but he needs all the practice snaps just to get ready. Given a free rein, my instinct in this game would be use a lot of shotgun with Wittek, and maybe the hurry-up with a slimmed-down play list. Letting this ND defense get set seems like a bad idea.

    If Wittek does poorly, would Kiffin switch to Kessler, and use a lot of roll-outs and planned scrambles, rather than a traditional approach. Spurrier or Brian Kelly would do that.

    • i don’t disagree with any of the point raised in this rather long analysis, however it blatantly ignores Honey Boo Boo’s biggest flaw: lack of competitive greatness. i am sure once the matter is evaluated, thre will be NO other QB’s who started 4 yrs for a major team who NEVER led a 4th QTR comeback!!! he had approx 17 looses in his career at Southern Cal, and virtually every one he had the chance to lead the 4th Qtr comeback but NEVER did.

      Honey Boo Boo simply has no guts.

      • Bluefynn

        He also helmed the biggest choke of all time – going from #1 to unranked. What a feather in your cap.

        • ProbationU

          Both Kiffin and Barkley are classic front-runners. They dd well last year when nothing was at stake. Not being allowed in any post-season games they could play freely and coach freely. This year arrived with pressure and expectations that they could not handle. Fitting that Lane slipped out a side door. Real winners also have the maturity and leadership abilities to face defeat head on. Nobody wins them all and defeat can reveal character or the lack of it

      • TrojanFan

        Run along you fuckin idiot, no around here gives a shit what your opinion is…..We know a few things for sure, you love the aroma of a jockstrap, you’re blind in the left eye, you stole your daughters Disney bike to do the paper route, nuts resting on your chin makes your toes curl up, but most of all you can’t wait for the next time bruinrod abuses you…..

        Take the dog and pony show up the 101 freeway

        Nothing would make me feel better than to bitch slapping your sorry ass

        2 wins in the last 16 years, that something to be really proud of

        • Bluefynn

          Spoken with the class i would expect. LOL.

      • USC owns the Rose Bowl

        Lol still on the “no comebacks” schtick huh Bucket? despite passing for more yards than Joe McKnight rushed for on the game-winning drive @ Ohio State his freshman season (2009)?

        Barkley sure didn’t live up to the hype his senior season, but one thing is for sure, that comeback at Ohio State was terrific 🙂

        Now go lose the Pac-12 title game so UCLA can waste another year! LOL


        • Rollo

          Barkley completed 15 of 31 passes for 195 yards, no touchdowns and an interception. He is the reason why a last-second drive was even necessary…and only 16 offensive points were scored.

          • USC owns the Rose Bowl

            doesn’t take away from the fact that as a freshman he was poised enough to complete passes en route to a game-winning score on the road in a hostile environment.

  • Bluefynn

    I like the latest update in his wikidpedia that says his business is finished. After the classless lowlife way he mocked us his freshmen year when that loser Carroll threw a TD bomb on us late, i think it was completely karmic that his final memory of the rose bowl was having his fat body crushed into the turf and broken by Anthony Barr. Karma is a bitch. The time of USC is over, for good.

    • UCLA fans. Always the classiest.

      • Bluefynn

        Barkley earned that karma his freshmen year.

      • Bluefynn

        wow, that’s the pot calling the kettle black.

    • SDTroy!

      In your dreams bRuin sh!thead. SC was on top of the PAC for an ENTIRE DECADE and despite 10 less scholarships has the TOP 2013 recruiting class in the nation. Let’s see how fucla handles the pressure of being relevant for the FIRST TIME IN 14 YEARS.

      • Bluefynn

        you guys got nothin. you cheated to get where you were and now you are reaping it. well pound you even worse next year.

        • TrojanFan

          Hey penis breath, you make no sense at all, just another bandwagon troll

          2 wins in 16 years, how pathetic

          • Bluefynn

            bandwagon hardly. lifelong fan. and you know exactly what I mean.

          • TrojanFan

            Lifelong fan….what a sad sack…LOL!!!!

        • SDTroy!

          bRuins can bang that drum as hard as they want, it still wont make a sound. The NCAA was unable to prove ANY connection between USC and improper benefits, only a “failure to monitor” followed by UNPRECEDENTED sanctions. REGARDLESS, explain how Reggie’s parents living rent free, money intended to get him to LEAVE SCHOOL EARLY, helped SC beat the living daylights out of fucla year in and year out?

          Face it, despite the ENORMOUS recruiting advantage of being in LA, ucla is still a pile of sh!t D1 football program without a meaningful accomplishment in decades.

          See ya next year chump!

          • Bluefynn

            oh please.

          • Bluefynn

            you guys were so guilty, its sick. and then theres all the rape and drug dealing nobody got busted for. guilty – as – charged
            we have sucked the past 10 – that corner is turned

            next year – we’ll stomp you even worse

            happy thanksgiving raider fan

          • TrojanFan

            Hey penis breath, pull the dick out of your ear, it’s really effecting your judgement…you’er only guilty if proven guilty….troll on

  • tqt888

    Well said!


    He will go in the 1st round for a lot of money with more money in on year than Wolf will make in a lifetime. Pretty sure he’s the all-time Pac12 leader in TD passes, too.