USC News and Notes for 8/17

Here are some quick hits to start the day. I have a weird schedule today to blogging might be sporadic.

The Freshman...

The OCR looks at Robey and Woods...

Here is a little more on Nickell Robey from the LAT...

"Everyone's fighting for him," Coach Lane Kiffin said Monday, referring to Trojans assistants.

In practices and scrimmages, Robey has shown a knack for making plays all over the field. Though small, the Frostproof, Fla., native said he was capable of handling bigger receivers.

"I don't even think about size," he said. "I feel I can play with anybody. I have a lot of heart and toughness."

I really like this kid!!

ESPN-LA takes another look at Robert Woods and the impression he is making as well!

It could be argued that Robert Woods was the least heralded of the star-studded trio of freshmen receivers in the USC class of 2010 at the start of fall camp.

[...]

He has, however, been the most impressive of the three through two and a half weeks of fall camp -- by far.

I like that Woods is not pretentious when it comes to his talent. He sounds very grounded in his attitude.

Here is a little more on the Dillon Baxter saga from Kiffins Men's Journal interview (via the OCR)...

The first details a meeting between Kiffin and Dillon Baxter. It sheds light on Kiffin’s statements after he suspended Baxter for the season opener that "it’s not just one thing" and "everything they do adds up."

Wrote author Paul Solotaroff:

Earlier, I’d watched as he hauled in a kid for ditching a final exam. Dillon Baxter, a five-star freshman tailback who’d enrolled a semester early to play spring football, had skipped the test to be with his ailing grandma, but Kiffin wasn’t hearing excuses. For 20 minutes, he laid into Baxter as a superb but lazy talent, citing from memory each lateness to class and missed tutorial session.

I think Kiffin is handling this situation appropriately. Baxter needs to understand that his actions will hurt the whole team...

Injury Notes...

Here are some updates from the injury front, and a few other notes...

** Starting left guard Butch Lewis is about a week away from returning from a strained groin muscle, Trojans coach Lane Kiffin said.

** Defensive end Nick Perry, no longer in a walking boot for his high right ankle sprain, is about two weeks from returning. Kiffin said the coaches are planning to have Perry available for the Sept. 2 season opener at Hawaii.

I will be surprised if Perry is ready to go for the opener.

If Havili can't go what are the options at Fullback?

With starting fullback Stanley Havili nursing a sore shoulder and few options behind him, a natural question in USC training camp is whether some of the physical tailbacks like Allen Bradford or Marc Tyler might move to fullback.

"We haven't considered it because of we've had tight ends there to fill the holes," running backs coach Kennedy Pola said. "But we are short-handed."

Tight end Rhett Ellison is playing fullback for portions of practices, and Jordan Cameron tried the spot but looks more likely to start at tight end.

Should be interesting...

Other notes of interest...

Two way players could be a thing of the future...

With scholarship cuts looming following NCAA sanctions, USC coach Lane Kiffin said Monday that two-way players could be common for the Trojans the next few years.

"That's really something I've talked about a lot," Kiffin said. "Especially three or four years from now."

[...]

"We need to figure this team out," Kiffin said. "We talk about (the lack of depth) all the time. We have to plan for injuries this season."

All hands on deck!

How will Lane Kiffin fare in his first year at USC. Here is a look at first year coaches of the past.

Another take on the Reggie Bush mess.

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