USC held its first scrimmage of fall camp Friday inside the Coliseum. With temperatures hovering around the 80's, the Trojans dressed in full-pads and tackled for the first time this season.
"It's obviously good to see guys and as usual you have younger guys make a lot of mistakes like normal," said USC head coach Lane Kiffin. "That's why we come in here instead of waiting for the first game of the year."
It was not only the firs time playing in the Coliseum for the younger guys, but also for the transfers, as tailback Silas Redd described the chills he got walking down the tunnel.
"I can only imagine what it's going to be like when 95,000 people are here," he said.
The Trojans have one more Coliseum practice on their fall camp schedule slated for Sunday, August 19th.
Depth for a Reason
Just when speculation was building that there may be too much talent to go around at tailback, Friday proved reason why it was absolutely necessary to bring in Penn State transfer Silas Redd.
Just minutes into the scrimmage, McNeal broke for a short gain only to remain laying on the turf. Trainers had to tend to him but he was able to walk off on his own. He did not return to the scrimmage.
Two plays later, tailback Silas Redd broke for a 43 yard run, only two yards short of the goal line. He may or may not be wishing he saved that first run for the 95,000 Trojan faithful.
"Silas, looked pretty good for that one run," said quarterback Matt Barkley. "He knows how to explode through the hole and he runs hard and he's pretty much got down all the protections and he knows his mental game, so he's a great addition to our running backs."
"To come in here and turnover the ball like that, it's a big concern," explained Kiffin. "It's the fastest way you lose games no matter how many preseason All-Americans you have, take care of the ball."
It's for those very reasons - McNeal getting banged up and Morgan fumbling the ball – that Redd was a needed addition to the team.
"That's why we went to get him," said Kiffin, "Because of all those concerns You know it happened in the past with DJ, Buck has never played and so you saw him put it on the ground again too today, and Curtis having injury issues over the course of time so glad he's here."
A Little Rusty
No surprise here that the Matt Barkley to Robert Woods connection is a little off.
Woods has been limited through fall camp, still being held back after the long recovery from ankle surgery.
"It was alright," said Barkley. "It will be getting better as he gets healthier and healthier, but we've just got to keep working."
It was unknown until scrimmage time if Kiffin would allow Woods to take reps.
He finished with four catches for 55 yards.
"Our timing was off but we'll be fine," Barkley said. "I don't think it's anything to worry about."
"I'm not [concerned], it's still early," said Kiffin. "If this is the case in two weeks then I'd be concerned, but you can't expect it to be great when one of them isn't practicing very much."
Left tackle Aundrey Walker did not participate due to a right wrist injury.
Despite saying he'd be back to practicing on Thursday, receiver George Farmer did not participate, still nursing a sore hamstring.
Center Khaled Holmes was limited Friday.
Tailback Curtis McNeal suffered an injury on a run, walked off the field and did not return.
Cornerback Torin Harris suffered an injury on a coverage route, walked off the field and did not return.
Fullback Soma Vainuku continues to have a strong camp.
When asked if he would like to continue voting in the USA Today Poll, Kiffin said "I don't really care."
Freshman Darreus Rogers has yet to be cleared by the NCAA.
Buck Allen 9/30
Soma Vainuku 8/14
DJ Morgan 10/69
Silas Redd 2/45, 43 yard run
Matt Barkley 7/16 – 109, 1 TD
Max Wittek 6/10 – 77
Cody Kessler 4/8 – 35, INT
Robert Woods 4/55
De'Von Flournoy 2/24
Randal Telfer 40, TD
William Tober, 4 tackles, fumble return 76 yds for TD
Drew McAllister 3
Scott Starr 3
Keyvon Seymour 3
Gerald Bowman 3