Stepping Up in Spring Ball

This spring ball practice session will be important for many players on the Trojan team and for some this upcoming spring will go a long way in determining where they will end up on the depth chart next fall. Click below for a look at eleven Trojans who will really be looking to step it up this spring.

This spring ball practice session will be important for many players on the Trojan team and for some this upcoming spring will go a long way in determining where they will end up on the depth chart next fall. Click below for a look at eleven Trojans who will really be looking to step it up this spring.

1) John David Booty

John David is coming off an injury and there is talk that he might redshirt if Brandon Hance is secure in the #2 spot. If Booty can put together a good spring then it would position him solidly in the reserve QB spot and he will see increased reps in practice throughout the year. There is also a good chance he would see increased playing time in the fall if USC gets out to any big leads. If his learning curve continues he should be able to establish himself this spring.

2) Chauncey Washington

Lost in all the hoopla of the performance by Reggie Bush and LenDale White last fall is the fact that there was another pretty good freshman running back named Chauncey Washington. Chauncey battled nagging injuries throughout the season which limited his playing time but when he got into games he showed flashes of excitement. If he can stay healthy in spring and get a lot of reps look for him to make a case for playing time in the running back rotation.

3) Whitney Lewis

Whitney came in as a freshman with a lot of hype but his freshman year production was limited due to a variety of reasons. At this point Whitney has shown the ability to contribute with terrific hands and good speed but now is the time to start being the dominant player he is capable of being. The Trojans have some dynamic young receivers and he needs to take advantage of this spring to earn his spot at the upper end of the receiver rotation along with Mike Williams and Steve Smith.

4) Chris McFoy

A tall receiver with long arms who really knows how to block, McFoy has paid his dues on the service team and is at the point in his Trojan career where he is ready to produce. What he is forced to contend with is a bevy of talented players at his spot and he will need to show that he can be counted on to catch the football in order to see more balls thrown his way.

5) Kyle Williams

A versatile offensive lineman who can play either guard or tackle and this will be a big opportunity for him to earn time with three open spots available on the line this spring. Kyle has primarily served as the back-up on the right side to both Justice and Matua to this point in his career.

6) Manuel Wright

A year ago at this point it was unclear if Wright would ever wear a Trojan uniform. Not only did he qualify for USC but he saw tremendous progress through the fall and now has increased excitement within the staff about his future. His combination of size and speed have the coaches considering playing him at end in an attempt to get him on the field any way they can.

7) Sedrick Ellis

The light bulb went on for Sedrick midway through the fall when he really started buying into the USC program. Since that point he has made great strides in the weight room and this spring he should start making his case to be the heir apparent to Mike Patterson at nose tackle. Ellis has a thick frame that should clog up the middle well.

8) Dallas Sartz

When Matt Grootegoed went down with an ankle injury midway through the season the Trojans simply inserted Dallas Sartz and didn't miss a beat. Sartz is versatile enough that he also played safety at times last fall and the coaches will be sure to find a way to get him on the field more. This spring will help to determine what that role is (could we see Dallas go to WLB if Groots is at SLB?) but the one thing we know is that Dallas will be playing a lot.

9) Thomas Williams

Williams was able to redshirt last year despite a lack of depth at linebacker toward the end of the season but he showed in bowl practices that he is ready to contribute. Thomas is a hard hitter who flies to the ball and he will get a lot of reps this spring which will showcase his abilities before Rivers and Powdrell arrive in the fall.

10) John Walker

Walker has settled into a role as a solid special teams contributor but he wants more and this spring will be as much of an opportunity as he could ask for. With both corner spots open Walker will be part of the competition to earn a starting job but there are a lot of young bodies fighting him for the spots.

11) Justin Wyatt

One of the favorites for a starting corner spot because of his amazing athleticism. The coaches have long tried to find a role for Wyatt because he has so many physical gifts (he had tryouts at both wide receiver and punt returner) and now is the time for him to show that he can become an everydown player at corner.


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