One little-discussed aspect of the Yahoo story on Matt Barkley were his comments on depth: “Three years in a row, we couldn’t even hit in our spring game. I mean, no hitting. It was basically like we were running drills. Not good.”
USC also did not tackle in its recent spring game. So how much will the 75-scholarship limit really impact the Trojans this season?
I don’t buy the revisionist theory expressed since the 7-6 season that less-physical practices caused the 2012 downfall because during the season the coaches said practices were physical enough.
And despite Barkley’s comments, USC went 10-2 in 2011 without tackling in the spring game.
I wonder more about the game-day injuries and how that will affect a 75-man roster. Those injuries cannot be managed by practices less physical. They are unavoidable and sometimes you just need to be lucky.
My sense is USC needs to hope for some good fortune, not so much because of not having fill-in players but because of the drop off at some positions once the reserves are forced to play.