John David Booty
Booty continued to improve and has all but solidified the starting role for Saturday's match-up against the Beavers. His finger is still a little swollen, so it may behoove Mark Sanchez to keep his wits about him. Booty, Sanchez and Coach Carroll have all stated at this point that it looks like Booty will get the start. They have also said that Sanchez would be able to step in if Booty cannot start or complete the game.
Trick or Treat!
A trick, or so it appears happened on the Special Teams as punter, kicker and snapper traded numbers. Numbers 18 (David Buehler's number), 44 (Greg Woidneck's number) and 50 (Will Collin's number) were all swapped.
So it looked as though Buehler was punting and Collins was kicking as Woidneck snapped the long balls. Trick or Treat!
The defense continued its hard hitting, as it appears, is the theme of the week. Mitch Mustain, Brandon Carswell and Damian Williams was able to pierce holes in the secondary, so there's still a bit of attention needed there.
Coaches Riled Up
The coaches hounded, pushed, prodded and yelled at the team to increase their level of play. Combined with the extra effort by the players may pay dividends come game day and possibly, the remainder of the season.
For the first time this year, the defense should be plenty healthy, as many of the injuries have been overcome. On the defensive line was: Lawrence Jackson, Sedrick Ellis, Fili Moala and Kyle Moore. The linebackers appear to be back with Rey Maualuga, Keith Rivers and Brian Cushing. Terrell Thomas and Cary Harris were on the corners as Kevin Ellison and Taylor Mays filled the safety spots.
On the offense, as mentioned, Booty should be back and healthy, Sam Baker would appear to be out for the upcoming game. Kristofer O'Dowd put in another good day's work but don't look for him to replace Matt Spanos just yet.
Whenever a good play was made by the offense, the players cheered and jeered at the defense. The defense celebrated by playing aggressive ball.
John David Booty Progress Report
Returning quarterback, John David Booty, who missed three games with a broken finger is much closer to starting once again. Said Booty, "I feel really good, I felt really good throwing the ball, I placed it where I wanted to place it…I can't ask for much more than that."
Booty complimented the development of Patrick Turner. He said, "Patrick Turner, had that shoulder (stinger at the beginning of the year), he didn't even practice, it kind of set him back. We knew where he could be. He seems to have bounced back totally. You saw last week he had a great game and all this week he's had good practices. That's really exciting to see."
Coach Carroll Concerned About Penalty Disparity
Pete Carroll repeated his concerns about the disparity between penalties called for and against the Trojans. He made it clear he was not complaining but pointing out the discrepancy in calls.
Said Carroll, "The numbers in 2003 the team was ranked 6th in penalties against our opponents, in 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007, we're 10th."
Coach Carroll also reiterated that Sam Baker will probably not play on Saturday but Stafon Johnson looks to be back and ready.