Spring Camp: Defensive Line Wreaks Havoc

Day Five of Spring Ball belonged to the defense. The defensive line dominated, the defensive backfield delivered, and the offense couldn't get it going. Clay de Leon looks at the Trojans good and bad for the day.

Spring Camp: Defensive Line Wreaks Havoc

On Day Five, the defensive line dominated the offense

Which came first, the chicken or the egg? The defensive line won the battle of the trenches on Day Five. The only question is, was the defensive line dominant, or is the offensive line just not playing up to par? Whatever the case may be, the defense on the whole shined on Tuesday, tallying several sacks and causing interceptions and tipped balls.

Struggling Offense

This is only Day Five, so there is no need to press the panic buttons just yet. The defense won this day, and the quarterbacks struggled as did the offensive line. Steve Sarkisian said in Spring Camp, day four or five, the offense will usually struggle, "We've been installing the offense and usually day four and five it gets difficult, especially for the quarterbacks and the offensive line. Hopefully around day six, seven, eight and nine, our (offense) will get better."

Pete Carroll added, "Our defense won today." He also said it's the first time installing the offense for Mitch Mustain. Both Mustain and Sanchez threw interceptions, although Mustain did redeem himself, throwing a 30-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Carswell.

Shining Bright

Christian Tupou deserved the game ball for the defense, terrorizing the quarterbacks, rushing passes, batting balls and causing sacks. With Averell Spicer out for Spring, Tupou has made himself quite visible.

Tupou's style is quite invigorating, rather than being a big muscle guy, he is more of a high-energy, big motor-type player, always working to get inside. His hard work has paid off this Spring, and particularly today, when he was in the backfield causing problems for the quarterbacks and the offense.

Allen Bradford tore a seam in his first carry on the running drills. Bradford continues to impress this Spring.

Kevin Thomas had a pair of interceptions on the day.

During running drills, Jordan Campbell had back-to-back stops of the running backs.

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner?

There was a noticeable rumble from the crowd as Coach Ed Ogeron made his way through the practice field. Spectators, fans and players alike smiled and were happy to see ‘Coach O' on the field. Ogeron is in town to attend USC's Pro Day tomorrow.

Slightly Injured

Damian Williams, a bright spot in the receiver unit wore a protective cover around his left foot. Williams sprained his ankle on Sunday, but hopes to be back on the field shortly.

Rey Maualuga sat out with a hamstring strain. Stanley Havili and Will Harris also sat out of practice.

Faces on the Sideline

In addition to Ed Ogeron, there were other familiar faces in the crowd today. John Papadakis was on the sidelines, sharing thoughts and laughs. Former USC player Josh Tatum was in attendance. Trojan Great, Hal Bedsole was also in attendance.

Baseball, Baseball, Baseball

The Majors opened up the baseball season this week. While the football team practiced on Howard Jones Field, the USC baseball team was warming up for a 7:00 p.m. game against UC Riverside at Dedeaux Field. The Trojans (12-14) won, 7-5, halting a five game losing streak. After playing San Diego tomorrow, the baseball team opens up a three game series at UCLA on Thursday.

Practice Tidbits

Taylor Mays had an interception to add to Kevin Thomas' pair.

Brandon Carswell pulled down a 30-yard touchdown pass from Mitch Mustain.

Adam Goodman was featured as fullback with Havili sitting out. Goodman pulled in a couple nice receptions.

Marc Tyler is picking up some steam. After straining his back on the first day of Spring, Tyler is gaining some of his strength and speed back.

Each quarterback threw interceptions at various points of practice.

Aaron Corp displayed his escape skills, running a broken play to the one yard line.

Damian Williams was sorely missed, although Patrick Turner and David Ausberry came up with nice catches.

Stafon Johnson did not attend practice because he had an exam.

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