Wednesday Practice Report

The Trojans had a productive practice on Wednesday afternoon in which Mitch Mustain and Aaron Corp responded with solid performances. After practice, the Trojans headed to the movies to watch The Dark Knight. Look inside for all the news, notes and quotes from the field.

Simmons Makes the Switch to Offense

After just a week in camp, the Trojans have suddenly found themselves thin on the offensive line after suffering a rash of injuries.

To get some stability and added depth along the offensive line Coach Carroll has asked defensive tackle Derek Simmons to switch from pressuring the quarterback to protecting him.

"We thought we needed to make the move," Coach Carroll said of asking Simmons to make the position switch. "We are working to see how he likes it. He was great about it and said whatever I have to do help the team."

The move became necessary after Michael Reardon, Tyron Smith, Matt Meyer, Alex Parsons and Jeff Byers all missed time due to illness and injuries.

"With the way things are going we are a little bit light all of the sudden with the inside stuff and not knowing on a couple of guys where we are we thought we needed to make the move," Carroll said after practice on Wednesday.

"I posed it to him that I think this would be important for us if you could do it and secure the depth situation."

2008 Recruiting Class Impresses

The Trojans 2008 recruiting class which was rated as the ninth best by Scout, was filled with star-studded recruits that had a world of potential from Blake Ayles at tight end, to Matt Kalil at offensive tackle and T.J. Bryant at cornerback.

So far this fall the highly touted freshmen have turned all of their potential into success, making several big plays and showing a willingness to compete with the upperclassmen.

"It looks like the recruiting class is really solid throughout," Coach Carroll said with excitement in his voice. "Everybody looks like they have a spot that they can fill and they will be able to fit into the position we had hoped for.

"It just looks like a really solid class for us."

Nearly every practice this fall Coach Carroll has singled out a freshman that was particularly impressive, and today, Drew McAllister received praise for his toughness.

"I really like the play of Drew McAllister," Carroll said. "He sprained his ankle and just practiced today. He toughed it out and made it through it. That is a great sign about his attitude and commitment."

Movie Night

The Trojans have been hard at work preparing for the upcoming season, so tonight the players will get to take a break from the usual grind and head to an IMAX theater and watch The Dark Knight.

The break is well deserved after a week of intense practices and team meetings.

Notes from the Field

Mitch Mustain had a much better practice on Wednesday afternoon after struggling at Tuesday's scrimmage. Mustain was very accurate during 7-on-7 and connected with Ronald Johnson and Anthony McCoy for touchdown passes during 11-on-11.

Anthony McCoy went up high in the middle of the endzone to pull down the touchdown pass from Mustain.

Aaron Corp connected with Damian Williams for a touchdown pass during 11-on-11. Williams caught the ball in stride and was drilled by Taylor Mays but hung on for the score.

Walking Wounded: Cary Harris, Jordan Campbell, Travon Patterson, Joe McKnight, Brice Butler, Matt Meyer, Michael Reardon and Tyron Smith were among the players that didn't participate in practice.

Mark Sanchez ditched his golf cart and was walking around practice with just a knee brace.

Brian Cushing started the day with two big hits. On one play he slammed Marc Tyler to the ground with his right arm as Tyler tried to run up the middle.

Marc Tyler had his best day of fall camp breaking off a couple of long runs and looked comfortable catching the ball out of the backfield.

Rey Maualuga supplied some excitement when he stepped in the passing lane and intercepted an Aaron Corp pass and returned the pick for a touchdown.

Allen Bradford scored on a short touchdown run during 11-on-11.

If you have any questions, comments or suggestions you can reach Kevin Carden
at kevin@scplaybook.com


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