Wednesday Practice Report

It's Stanford week, so naturally questions about last year's shocking loss to a 41-point underdog have been a major topic of discussion. Look inside to see what Pete Carroll has to say about last year's loss and much more.

Stanford Loss Still Stings

It's Stanford week, so naturally questions about last year's shocking loss to a 41-point underdog have been a major topic of discussion.

"For the media it's the storyline of the week," Carroll said.

When asked about the loss, Carroll takes full responsibility and admits that he made a mistake by not substituting for John David Booty, who fractured the middle finger on his throwing hand in the second quarter.

"That one in particular, was one where I really made a mistake in that game in judgment, in playing John (David Booty)," Carroll said of USC's 24-23 loss. "I should have got John out of there.

"He had a second half to forget about and he had never played like that. It was obvious that it was a factor, so I could have headed that off and gone with Mark (Sanchez) and tried to finish off the game."

Playing with the injured finger, Booty was intercepted four times.

"He said he was alright, so I needed to override what he was saying and I didn't do it," said Carroll. "We put ourselves in a very bad situation because of that."

While the loss still lingers in Carroll's mind, like all of the "lousy ones," it isn't something that he is using to motivate his team.

"I don't ever want to drag things from the past to what we are doing right now, good or bad," Carroll explained. "We try and practice that discipline.

"It's not something that we are talking about. We don't want to dwell on it or spend any time on it because there is nothing that we can do about that."

The Trojans can finally put last year's loss in the past with an impressive response this Saturday in Palo Alto.

Moala Slowed

USC defensive tackle Fili Moala tweaked his groin during practice on Wednesday. Moala said he has been bothered by the nagging groin injury since the Washington State game.

"My groin has been messing with me for about a month now," Moala said. "It's my fault, I haven't been taking care of it like I should be. It's getting pretty bad.

"I'm having a real hard time lifting my leg. I'm about to go have it checked out."

News and Notes

- Jordan Campbell and Blake Ayles were among the players that didn't practice on Wednesday.

- Tailback Joe McKnight returned to practice on Wednesday, after missing Tuesday to attend his grandmother's funeral in Louisiana.

- Defensive tackle Averell Spicer has been cleared by team doctors and will play this Saturday against Stanford.

- Two days after being moved to tailback, D.J. Shoemate didn't dress for practice because he banged up his shoulder. No word on the extent of the injury.

- Mark Sanchez and the offense looked very sharp in the redzone during 7-on-7. Sanchez connected with tight end Anthony McCoy for two touchdowns and also hit Patrick Turner in the corner of the end zone for a score.

- Clay Matthews continued his spectacular special teams play with another blocked field goal attempt on Wednesday.

If you have any questions, comments or suggestions you can reach Kevin Carden at Top Stories