Here’s a story on freshman defensive end Oluwole Betiku’s journey from Nigeria to USC.
“Take one look at him and his monstrous 6-foot-4, 260-pound frame, listen to how he willed his way from Nigeria to Los Angeles in search of a better life, and you’ll find yourself dreaming up a bright future for the supersized defensive end and his mega-watt smile — a possibility that, from the dirt streets of Lagos, had seemed so distant and unattainable.”
Andy Enfield spoke at Pac-12 media day about the decision of Julian Jacobs and Nikola Jovanovic to turn pro.
“They made their own decisions to move on and become draft picks, and unfortunately for both they did not get drafted. Signed on as free agents for training camp and did not make the teams. So they’ll have to fight their way back to the NBA their own route. An individual decision.”
In this column, I write about how the UCLA game is actually much more important than the Washington game next month. Especially for Clay Helton. And I offer some good news for fans sick of midweek games at the Coliseum. Full column here.
Matt Barkley got extended playing time for the first time since October 27, 2013, tonight in the Chicago Bears-Green Bay Packers game. Barkley completed 6-of-11 passes for 81 yards and was intercepted twice. In the photo above, Barkley’s USC teammate, Nick Perry, tries to sack him.
The NCAA charged Louisville basketball with four serious violations today . . . but not a lack of institutional control charge, which is considered the most serious and what USC got hit with in the Reggie Bush case. You could say a former basketball staffer hiring escorts and strippers for recruits and players is worse, but the NCAA’s been pretty toothless since the USC sanctions.
USC returned all five offensive line starters and entered the season with the second-most career starts in the country. But which line is ranked No. 2 in the nation this season by Pro Football Focus? Washington State.
“The Cougars line boasts PFF’s highest-graded guard in Cody O’Connell and the sixth-highest and 10th-highest graded tackles in Cole Madison and Andre Dillard respectively, along with No. 15 guard Eduardo Middleton.”
Washington State. USC is not listed in the top 10 rankings, by the way.
In my analysis for today’s paper, I write about the constant turnover on the USC coaching staff. That does not mean keeping a bad coach, but making sure you get it right when you hire the next one.
Excerpt: For the defensive linemen, Ed Orgeron taught one system. He was replaced for two years by Chris Wilson. This year, defensive coordinator Clancy Pendergast is coaching the defensive ends while Kenechi Udeze handles the tackles.
For a fourth-year senior, that means four different coaches. A similar argument could be made by USC’s offensive linemen. Senior offensive tackle Zach Banner’s had a different offensive line coach every year. Full story here