Spring Ball Day 1

The clouds were overhead with a hint of rain throughout the day but that did nothing to dampen the spirits of the Trojans as they went through an energetic first day of spring ball practice on Tuesday. The mood was upbeat and sharp with an air of confidence from this veteran team as they went through a shorts and helmets workout in front of a large gathering of fans watching from the sidelines.

The first day of spring, at least from the perspective of someone watching from the sidelines, is spent glancing excitedly from player to player to see who has progressed during winter workouts and who is making a strong first impression in the first day of practice. Here are a few things which caught our eye today:

* Brian Cushing sporting a new Mohawk haircut under his helmet.

* Desmond Reed making a couple long runs during early drills, including one on Brian Kennedy Field where he broke into the clear only to trip as he was breaking free for a touchdown.

* Michael Coleman, who is moving to fullback, was not dressed for practice and watched from the sidelines.

* Will Harris, who has missed most of the past two seasons with injury, made a nice pass break-up during an early drill. Will didn't take part in the team drill at the end of the day but it sure was good to see him out there in the first place.

* The first rotation we saw on the line featured Nick Howell at center with Jeff Byers at LG and Drew Radovich at RT. We saw a whole bunch of combinations today on the line, and will continue to see the coaches experiment with various rotations throughout spring.

* C.J. Gable is running with a lot of confidence.

* In the line one on one drills, Fili Moala got things going by blowing past his man. Boy, Fili looks real good. Thomas Herring absolutely overpowered Lawrence Miles with a solid arm drive. Howell had a good rep by holding off Sed Ellis to the cheers of his offensive line mates.

* John David Booty threw a beautiful touch pass to Patrick Turner on a deep touchdown. I think that was one of the best touch passes I've ever seen from John David.

* David Ausberry had a couple nice catches in a row, He looks big and powerful in his new #9.

* Speaking of receivers, Damian Williams was very quick and ran good routes.

* Vincent Joseph had a nice pass break-up on a pass intended for Williams.

* Chauncey broke a run up the middle. There is so much talk about our young tailbacks that it's easy to forget about Chauncey. He looks in shape, as does Hershel. It's so good to see #34 on the field (and to see his mother, Rose, in the stands as Rose is one of the most loyal team parents around).

* Travon Patterson put a block on Clay Matthews on one play, a few plays later Travon caught a pass in the flat and Clay threw him to the ground with a tackle.

* Vincent Joseph had another pass break-up, this time on a pass intended for Vidal Hazelton.

* Emmanuel Moody had a pauir of long runs up the middle.

* Mark Sanchez had a nice pass to Ausberry. Both Sanchez and Booty looked sharp today.

* There were several incoming freshmen watching from the sidelines including Aaron Corp, Michael Reardon and Da'John Harris. The Simmons brothers, Maurice and Marquis, were also there.

* We will have video highlights later tonight, a video interview with Will Harris and a look at yet another El Camino College receiver who is showing interest in USC.

* The team held tryouts for potential walk-ons after practice.


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