Here’s a 1954 photo of USC players Roy Irvin, Al Ludecke and Walter Thompson leaving the Hotel Continental in Kansas City before a Final Four game against Penn State. The Trojans made the Final Four that season, losing to Bradley, 74-72 in a semifinal game. They lost to Penn State, 70-61, in the third-place game.
Does USC wide receiver Isaac Whitney have a chance to get drafted? Clay Helton mentioned yesterday that Sam Darnold is adjusting to new receivers now that JuJu Smith-Schuster, Darreus Rogers, DeQuan Hampton and Whitney are gone.
Well, Hampton was a bit player last season and Whitney caught three passes all season. So maybe it isn’t that big of an adjustment for Darnold. What will be interesting is to see if Whitney’s draft status improves now that teams are more aware of him.
It’s time for a Sunday notes column on USC spring football, starting with some of the new faces that could be starting next season.
Excerpt: The weakside linebacker will be someone new. During spring drills, it’s sophomore John Houston, who played mostly on special teams last season. Defensive tackle Marlon Tuipulotu is a true freshman but the coaches inserted him into starting lineup during Saturday’s scrimmage.
The kicker is currently freshman Michael Brown, with starter Matt Boermeester suspended after an incident involving a female student. Imagine a game coming down to the little-used Brown next year? Full column here
If you want to update the score, it’s now one Sweet 16 in six years vs. four Sweet 16’s in 22 years.
Velus Jones had a 40-yard reception today in USC’s first scrimmage. But among the freshmen, there hasn’t been a lot of separation among the freshmen. Michael Pittman played a little bit last year so he was ahead of most of the others. And Jones is small but speedy. But otherwise the rest of the group’s been pretty quiet dating back to last fall.
I’d say Pittman and Jones will play for sure next season. After that, it’s undetermined.
USC held a 70-play scrimmage today. There wasn’t much scoring as Ronald Jones had two TD runs. Sam Darnold threw an interception, his sixth of the spring, on a tipped pass. Matt Fink also had one. Darnold and Velus Jones had a 40-yard pass play.
Darnold has now thrown more interceptions in six spring practices than he did in about 70 training camp/spring practices before this spring.
USC women’s tennis coach Richard Gallien is stepping down after 22 years. Gallien was well-liked and extremely loyal to USC. This is the second coach in March to be leaving (women’s basketball coach Cynthia Cooper was the other). And it sure looks like athletic director Lynn Swann is making moves.