Monday practice report

I was all set to report on the moods of players and coaches during the first practice after a loss in a long time, but, truth be told, there really is nothing to say. If I hadn't watched the Trojans lose on Saturday, I wouldn't have been able to gather it from the way practice went.

Players were still talkative and there still seemed to be that zip that has been a major part of Trojan practices.

The only major surprise on Monday was that Thomas Williams donned a white jersey and spent the practice at fullback. He certainly looks more than capable of playing there, making a great reception on a wheel route during scout-team drills. With Williams, it's all going to come down to blocking assignments and learning the offensive playbook. His skills at the position are obvious. It will be interesting to see if Williams continues to practice exclusively with the offense this week.

Garrett Green remained with the offense as well, and was one of three quarterbacks who ran the scout team today.

Some of the best plays from today all came as the scout-team offense went against the defense.

The first was a leaping catch from David Ausberry along the far sideline. It was a case of another practice, another stand-out play from Ausberry. I was watching practice with one of the local beat writers and he feels that from the start of fall practice to right now, no freshman has improved as much as Ausberry. Much has been made about the lack of wide receiver recruits for the 2007 season, but if Ausberry continues to progress the way he has, the Trojans will have one heck of a redshirt freshman at wide receiver next season.

The defensive backs made a couple statements today as Terrell Thomas and Shareece Wright broke quickly on two separate out routes. Thomas intercepted his and was off down the sideline, while Wright needed to go up the ladder to bat his away from the receiver.

When the second-team offense went up against the first-team defense, Brian Cushing made they play of the drill. Lined up as a defensive end opposite Dale Thompson, Cushing dropped back as Thompson took off on a wheel route. The throw tried to lead Thompson toward the sideline, but Cushing kept with him step for step and ended up stealing the ball away for an interception.

The first-team offense still looks comfortable slinging the ball downfield as receivers were streaking all over the place. The rushing carries were spead out among several different tailbacks, as Chauncey Washington, CJ Gable, Emmanuel Moody and Allen Bradford looked to receive about an equal amount. That's definitely more of a Monday practice thing than evidence that Pete Carroll is worried about Washington's ball control.


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