As football practice got underway, a thrill filled the air. On the turf of Cromwell Field, the team performed warm-up and stretching exercises. Not to be forgotten, the USC basketball team walked onto the track of the stadium. Standing on the sidelines between both teams, it was a challenge to watch both teams.
The basketball team went through strength and conditioning drills on the track, led by manager Rudy Hackett. The team ran the track, then ran sprints and performed stretching exercises. There is an aura around this team, as they promise to do quite well this season with the likes of O.J. Mayo, Daniel Hackett, Taj Gibson, Davon Jefferson and Mamadou Diarra leading the way.
There was a feeling of excellence watching both teams perform.
Back to Football
Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the most obvious sights on Cromwell field were: Trey Henderson working out on the sidelines sans crutches, Josh Pinkard on the table being iced down and Joe McKnight being taped. McKnight did have significant practice time.
Recovering players on the field included Hershel Dennis, Chauncey Washington, and Patrick Turner. Brian Cushing didn't practice, but Pete Carroll expects him back Tuesday or Wednesday. Mark Sanchez had significant time taking snaps under center.
Broderick Green spent his afternoon wheeling around on the "T-Mac Go-Cart Special," and related that he expects the cast to come off in a couple weeks and he will start rehabilitation at that point. Green expects to return to play this season.
The Atmosphere of Game Week
Although the team dressed in shells, practice was fast paced and the team put in a full day's work. The practice was intense and very high energy, even if there was no contact for this session. There is a subtle sense of urgency building up beneath the surface of this team.
Kris O'Dowd continues to work at center but it was a welcome relief for the coaches to see Matt Spanos as well. Spanos would not be ready to play this week but is attempting a return to action soon. Patrick Turner practiced in a yellow jersey (no contact).
John David Booty practiced well, Sanchez, as number two behind Booty got a
lot of reps. Sanchez was shaking some of the rust off, as many of his passes
sailed from his receivers.
C.J. Gable, Stafon Johnson, Desmond Reed carried the ball, as did Dennis, Washington and Tyler. Travon Patterson is building up game speed.
Surprise Birthday Party
Coach Carroll turns 56 this Saturday.