Head Coach Pete Carroll held his press conference on the upcoming Nebraska game on Saturday The following are excerpts.
Ready for Nebraska!
The home crowd is looking for a big win to start the season. And beating Nebraska will go a long way to showing the naysayers that SC has put the past in the past and is ready to make another run towards another title game. This is new chapter in USC football with new players and new leaders. There is not as much pressure as there was last year but we still need to put up a convincing win.
On the Sedrick Ellis Situation:
On how long Ellis is expected to be out:
"A few weeks is what we are hoping, at the most. It could be less than that depending on what they have to do. Fili (Moala) will start there. Fili Moala has been working there and played really well there in the game last week, so he jumps right to the spot and takes over and away we go. Chris Barrett starts at the three technique spot and we were fortunate that those guys were rotating last week so it will work out that he'll be ready to step in. We are going to miss Sedrick for a couple weeks here. He had a great first game and is a terrific football player. This creates a great opportunity for Fili to jump in on the nose spot and for Chris to play on a full-time basis. We'll take a good charge at it and hope these guys do real well for us."
Depending on the severity of the tear he could miss a week or 2-4 weeks we won't know until after the surgery. Based on Coach Carroll's comment on "locking up" it sounds like a bucket handle tear that easily repaired. The depth that USC has compiled enables players to step up as needed and be role players.
On the Nebraska program reaching elite status again:
Bill Callahan is bringing this team back to national prominence. He still has some work to do but it looks like things are starting to gel. A less than stellar performance may make things difficult on the coaching staff and people will begin to question the implementation of the West coast Offense.
On the running back situation:
"We are going to mix our guys throughout the week and go as we have. See what happens by the end of the week, see who makes it through and whose ready to go, who has a good week and just leave it in a real competitive mode. I know that makes you all uncomfortable about it, but it is the best way for us to do it right now, we'll figure it out if it changes and when it does, hopefully we will adjust impeccably."
I don't think you will see the running back by committee that we saw against Arkansas. There will be some player rotations but I think you will Washington, if healthy, or Gable leading the running attack. It's a good problem to have but the situation needs to solidify itself. Moody and Bradford are also in the mix so there are plenty of guys chomping at the bit to get in the game and make a statement.
On the pressures of coaching at the high profile schools:
Please tell me that this is the guy that you DON'T want coaching your team. His positive attitude brings the most out of his players and staff.. There is only one school I can think of that wouldn't want Pete Carroll coaching their team and we have seen how that's working out for them. This guys a winner I don't care what anybody says. Winning breeds continued success. We are damn lucky to have him.
On the importance of depth with the injuries you have:
That's the biggest benefit we have due to Pete Carroll's recruiting. His positive attitude attracts those players who can play and who are willing to compete not expect to have the starting job handed to them.
This will be a great game. The new guys want to shine and the old guys want to turn the page and write a new chapter for USC football. They have a lot that they want to show people even after a convincing win against Arkansas. They wan to continue to show the other programs that they are not going away. I for one am looking forward to it!