Coliseum scrimmage report

The Trojans held an extended scrimmage tonight at the Coliseum that featured a lot of game planning work while getting ready for the start of the season. There was a lot to like about what we saw including yet another terrific performance from the first team offense led by Matt Leinart who put together three touchdown drives in three series of action. Dominique Byrd had three touchdown catches on the night as well. The defense had some highlights of their own with four interceptions.

Here are some highlights from each series:

The first team defense took the field to start the day against the scout offense led by Michael McDonald at quarterback. Keith Rivers had a couple tackles on the three and out drive including a nice stop on a Chauncey Washington run to force a Taylor Odegard punt. Reggie Bush returned the punt for a touchdown. As Reggie raced in the clear toward the goal line one noted Trojan observer commented "gee, what a surprise".

Leinart brought the first offense on the field and he was hot from the start. A couple completions to Patrick Turner and Dwayne Jarrett resulted in a pair of first downs and then LenDale White took a handoff and got a first down of his own with an 18 yard ramble before Luthur Brown made the tackle. A Leinart pass to Kirtman gained 15 yards. Brandon Ting stopped Reggie on a short run inside the five and then Leinart hit Dominique Byrd in the end zone for a touchdown.

Mark Sanchez led the scout offense on their second series and on one of his first plays he found Dale Thompson dragging across the field for 16 yards and a first down. A Chauncey run gained 10 yards before a Cary Harris tackle and later Sanchez put a lot of zip on an out pattern to Chris McFoy. A couple plays later Mark tried to hit William Buchanon deep in the end zone but Josh Pinkard was able to make the interception.

The next series for the first offense was a short one as on the 2nd play John David Booty hit Dominique Byrd in the flat and he was able to change direction nicely with a gang of defenders following him and he outran them to the end zone for a 73 yard score. It was a great example of the unique talent Byrd brings to the tight end spot.

Sanchez hooked up with McFoy for an 11 yard completion with a Rivers tackle but on 3rd down he tried to hit Greig Carlson and Cary Harris was able to force the incompletion with good coverage.

Desmond Reed almost returned a long punt for a touchdown but Will Harris caught him in the open field.

Bush had 15 yard on a nice run and then on 3rd down Collin Ashton made a nice tackle to stop LenDale short of the first down.

Kyle Moore put pressure on McDonald and he threw an errant pass that was picked off by Kevin Ellison.

With the ball on the opponent 15 after the pick Leinart had a short field to work with and it didn't take him long to find the end zone with a touchdown pass to Byrd.

The next drive featured a pair of good hits. Sanchez threw a deep in pass to Carlson who made the catch despite an impressive pop from Darnell Bing. A couple plays later Sanchez was picked by John Walker and on the return Oscar Lua pancaked Chilo Rachal with a great block.

Perhaps the prettiest play of the night came when Leinart threw a short pass across the middle to Reggie, the ball was behind him but Reggie calmly reached back with one hand and caught the ball in stride before racing down the sidelines. He was barely forced out at the ten yard line and LenDale took it into the end zone from there on a nice run.

After halftime LenDale took the opening carry and ran 26 yards but shortly after that Booty was rolling right under pressure and his pass was picked by Will Harris.

Frostee Rucker and Lawrence Jackson combined for a sack on McDonald. Mike then completed a 48 yard TD pass to Chris McFoy who ran right through the end zone and up the Coliseum stairs as his teammates came over to congratulate him.

Booty got his series moving with a 22 yard completion to McFoy and then he went right back to Chris on the next play for 27 more yards. Kaluka Maiava stopped a short LenDale White run and a few plays later Mario Danelo hit a 28 yard field goal and that was the end of the day.

Jethro Franklin works with d-line

Pete Carroll walks among team during warm-ups


USCFootball.com Top Stories