USC Morning Buzz

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.

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  • rusoviet

    Scott if anything it further confirms Barkley’s focus was strictly on himself. I won’t go as far as to claim he is spoiled but the location of his meet and greet with the Yahoo reporter was telling – a golf course overlooking the Pacific.

    The problem with coming from OC is just that i.e. one hales from there. I wonder how Barkley will do with an average winning team in the NFL – I don’t see him matching Sanchez’ first two years based on this past one at USC. Barkley seems frustrated at his record but I hear nothing of his own hand in creating it not a word. It’s all because of someone or something else that caused the losses.

    • dtksr1

      Right! Barkley called the plays, did the position coaching in blocking & tackling and made sure the headcoach kept tight discipline on the team & the head coach himself.

      • TrojanFan


        ….and that stout defense kept them in the games…..hahaha!

    • TrojanFan

      Lame!….Did you even watch any of the games. Some of the shlt you post leaves me scratching my head.

      • rusoviet

        Yeah and your nuanced moves on West 28th St… play it Elliot!

        • TrojanFan

          Wrong blog….get a life!

          • rusoviet

            For you sweetcakes –

            I got equipment and a van and I want to start a band with daddy’s money (yeah…sure)

            I’ll pick out a shiny new guitar and a girl to do PR with daddy’s money (oh boy)

            Listen, I got a house in Malibu, sixteen tracks out by the pool with daddy’s money (you know what)

            We won’t practice every day, but we’ll make it anyway with daddy’s money (sure we will)

            Daddy’s money (woo!), daddy’s money”

            Kuddles for Mattie and all his bras’ (trojanboy) on West 28th – all frat boys to the rescue with daddy’s money

          • TrojanFan

            Looks like bucket is not the only one needing to have a cranium exam. Try Dr. T Bone, he’s right around the corner from West 28th….good luck!

          • rusoviet

            As I said you know whereof you speak… it Elliot!

          • TrojanFan

            If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance then baffle them with bullshit… it Elliot!

          • rusoviet

            Lovin’ and a huggin’ – cruzin’ 28th Street….working on a tan…headin’ for the links….w. daddy’s money – start the swing Elliot….strut….yeah!

          • TrojanFan

            Wrong blog!

      • Cheap seats

        Maybe someone with an affiliation to CDM? He voiced his hate for all things Mater Dei in another post.

      • ThaiMex

        Check for head lice, scumbag.
        fit on torgan!

        • TrojanFan

          and you check for brain damage, scumbag
          It’s Fight On, idiot!

  • gotroy22

    USC is now facing the problems most other Pac 12 teams have- good starters but no depth if the injury bug hits. Only superior coaching can overcome that.

  • Karla

    Speaking of getting lucky, Scott, you can get lucky with me anytime. Check your email. ; )

    • TrojanFan

      Bucket posting as a woman. The things this idiot would do to get a piece of the wolfman…..creeeeepy!

      • Karla

        I was talking to Scott, you insect. You seem like the guy in bars who is always butting in on conversations. I wondered why there are no women on this blog and now I know why. It’s like visiting an insane nuthouse.

      • Karla

        I was talking to Scott, you insect. You seem like the guy in bars who is always butting in on conversations. I wondered why there are no women on this blog and now I know why. It’s like visiting an insane nuthouse.

        • Jethro G Sabbath

          Karla dear,

          Whatever you do, don’t get yourself involved with any of the Bruin trolls on here. They stay up all hours of the night inventing new screen names to post under and then put up the same tired old material.
          They won’t have time for you, honey.

          • Karla

            Thanks but I am only interested in Scott, not any Bruins or Trojan crazies people. It is like I am the only woman ever to visit this site? I won’t be back.

          • WEB_Dupree

            Given all the fake names, it’s impossible to answer your question, but I’ve been coming here for years, and honestly I can’t recall anyone on this blog posting with a woman’s name or referring to herself as a woman. These comment threads are kind of like the scribblings on the wall of a men’s public restroom, in more ways than one.

          • WEB_Dupree

            Oh, wait, there was “Cal Girl”, but she was a Cal fan.

          • TrojanFan

            I hope the door hits you on the way out

        • TrojanFan

          There still isn’t any women on this blog!…..hahaha!

    • Isn’t Scott Wolf gay?

      • TrojanFan

        Karla has a penis!

  • Cheap seats

    Physical practices help, but so does a physical MENTALITY. That requires calling plays that have downhill running, PRACTICING run plays, use of a fullback, and using a power formation on the 1st and goal. When you do that, your defense also becomes tougher from practicing against it.

    Instead, we practice on occasion in some 2 TE sets and I-formations, but we run finesse plays (bubble screen crap, etc). Then we wonder why we so many LBs and DBs p*ssy-footing around the pile and not wanting to get their jersey dirty. Habits come from practice.

    If any of you have watched a USC practice in the past 3 years and compare the practices vs. the likes of Stanford, the answer is clear why we aren’t the bullies we once were.

    This is head scratching coming from Lane Kiffin. I’ve followed Kiff since his days at Oakland where he brought the power run game back with Justin Fargas and Michael Bush. I guess we know it didn’t come from him but maybe Tom Cable???

  • Golden Trojan

    To add to Cheap Seats – You cannot blame injuries on physical practices and lack of depth. Kiffen had 117 guys on the roster last season, sure only 75 were on scholie and I don’t know the number of red shirts, but Pete had 98 on the roster in 07 with 15 non scholies. Pete had no trouble running competitive physical practices. Injuries happen due to lack of talent and lack of coaching (practice management, philosophy, recruiting). I think Kiffen’s recruiting reputation is becoming more and more over rated. He doesn’t have the quality horses Pete had and he’s not the coach Pete is.

    • Cheap seats

      That’s why I’ve been trying to see if there was a pattern to all the spring injuries — particularly the KNEE injuries.

      How many injuries happened as a direct result of tackling or being in pads? For the non-tackling injuries, is it the practice field? The cleats?

  • Ben Factor

    Neither Barkley nor Kiffin has attributed the 2012 results strictly, or even mostly, to lack of physical practices. Thus, I don’t think it’s accurate to label the absence of physical practices as a revisionist theory.

    Before and during the season, many observers were skeptical about the non-physical approach to practice. Obviously, Lane Kiffin thought it was the better approach then, and has now changed his mind. We don’t know Matt Barkley’s past thinking, and as he stated, he mostly deferred to his coach.

    In addition, many observers thought that USC had been lucky regarding injuries in 2011, and that luck would be needed in 2012, when the roster was further depleted. One of Kiffin’s very adroit observations BEFORE the season was that he doubted USC could be an NC team with a reduced roster. (He later undercut his own shrewd prescience by voting USC #1 in the AP Poll. True, he thought the vote was secret-ballot, but that cut both ways. If he voted in what he thought was secrecy, that would suggest he voted his true belief.)

    It’s not a mystery that luck regarding injuries will be needed in 2013. The roster will be more depleted than in 2012. That affects lots of things, from fielding an effective scout team, having adequately prepared back-ups, etc.

    Even without injuries, the CB position and/or the LT position may prevent a really successful season. Some of that is sanctions. Some of it is probably be bad luck in recruiting. Some of it is probably sub-optimal strategy in recruiting. It’s like explaining the 2012 results–there is no single answer.