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Football News and Notes

Here's a quick recap of a few things that I didn't get to earlier this week.

Jarrett's Pro Day

Gary Klein has the story in the LAT regarding Dwayne Jarrett's showing at SC's Pro Day.

On a clear and breezy afternoon devoid of the thousands of spectators that attended last year's evaluation event, Jarrett's best time in front of the assembled scouts was 4.62 seconds.

"A lot of people were saying I was going to run like a 4.7, 4.8 and I think I surprised a lot of people," said Jarrett, who, like Reggie Bush last year, wore a sleek track suit designed by a shoe company. "My body of work talks for itself."

Jarrett put off running the 40 last month at the NFL scouting combine at Indianapolis because of a groin strain. His time was slower than the reported 4.4 seconds that teammate Steve Smith ran in Indianapolis and also slower than the 4.58 that linebacker Dallas Sartz clocked Wednesday.

I don't think this hurts him at all he was never a "speedy" receiver so I'm not sure what the concern is that some are discussing.

Following up on that is this article from Mark Saxon from the OC Register on Jarrett and teammate Steve Smith.

LOS ANGELES - Dwayne Jarrett and Steve Smith were virtually impossible to separate on the USC stat sheet last year, and they appear to be drawing closer and closer in the eyes of the NFL.

Jarrett ran a pedestrian 40-yard dash of 4.62 -- according to one NFL scout, timing by hand -- at USC's Pro Day on Wednesday afternoon in front of a small army of scouts, coaches and NFL executives. Jarrett had been projected as a top-15 pick in next month's draft, but the workout might have knocked him into the latter stages of the first round -- or even the second.

Its hard to say where he will end up but whomever gets Jarrett and Smith will get a couple of great receivers. Some time hanging on to the ball is more important that outrunning the coverage.

More trouble than it's worth

There have been a couple of stories by Scott Wolf at the DN in regards to Stafon Johnson. It seem that some at Dorsey High are not pleased that their boy Stafon didn't get a whole lot of playing time last season and that apparently affected his brothers decision to commit to UCLA instead of USC. Someone correct me if I'm wrong but wasn't Stafon the player rumored to have shown up to practice wearing a t-shirt with a picture of himself on the front and the words "the Prince" on the back, referencing that he would be the next Reggie Bush? You know Pete Carroll loved that. Is this the same Stafon Johnson that cried on sidelines when he wasn't used in the Arkansas game? Come on man, get it together!

It remains to be seen if USC tailback Stafon Johnson returns for his sophomore season, but maybe it's a sign that his stepbrother recently shunned the Trojans.

Rahim Moore, a safety from Dorsey High, recently committed to UCLA. Johnson, who continues to be the subject of speculation he will transfer, said he did not try to sway Moore in his decision.
Sword Medical

"I let it be up to him," Johnson said. "He's his own man. I can't make the decision for him. I have no idea why he decided what he did. It wasn't brought to my attention. I talked to him about playing here and UCLA sounded better."

USC did not offer Moore a scholarship until he already had decided to commit to UCLA, but Johnson said he did not interfere. He also said Tuesday he was still a Trojan.

Of course he spoke to his brother we're not that stupid.

There is no question he has the talent but is his head in the right place? And if the coaches at Dorsey are unhappy maybe they should look at the WHOLE situation a little more carefully. This is big boy football not Pop Warner so past success doesn't automatically get you a starting job you need to earn it. Stafon looks like he had some issues picking up the offense early on and that may have contributed to his falling down the depth chart. Maybe he transfers maybe he doesn't but regardless if wants to start he needs to get it done on the field.

The Shotgun Approach

SC broke out the Shotgun at practice earlier this week in what will be a new wrinkle in the SC offence this coming season.

As promised when assistant head coach Steve Sarkisian took control of the offense in February, the shotgun reappeared Tuesday in spring practice, at least for three or so plays each for Booty and Mark Sanchez.

"I don't know why they put it in, but a week or two of doing it and it should be pretty good," Booty said after hitting wide receiver Travon Patterson for a long touchdown pass on one of his shotgun plays.

USC coach Pete Carroll said they put the formation in for obvious passing situations, such as third-and-long, but not to be a staple of the offense.

Booty said the formation wasn't added because he was getting passes knocked down at the line of scrimmage.

I'm not quite sure if I buy into that last statement but it should be fun to watch this season.

What depth at Linbacker

Wolf has the news on the recent string of injuries at the LB position. We have a long way to go before this becomes an issue so while it would be nice to have everyone healthy for spring practice it happens and there isn't much we can do about it.

Spring practice rarely reveals too much but six practices have already demonstrated that USC's much- prized depth at linebacker can quickly disappear.

The Trojans lost strongside linebacker Clay Matthews of Agoura on Thursday after he pulled a thigh muscle, less than a week after starter Brian Cushing pulled his hamstring.

Freshman Michael Morgan is already out for the spring with a back injury, which left senior Thomas Williams, who was moved to fullback late last season, as the lone scholarship player at the position.

Ok, lets not get all worked up about it. These guys go all out that's what makes them great so they will heal up before thee season starts and be ready to go.

Green Stops by Practice

Looks like this kid has a good head on shoulders and looks to step up to the challenge. He wasn't too worried about all the competition at tailback.

As one of three running backs set to join USC's already crowded backfield in the fall, Broderick Green watched with keen interest Thursday as the Trojans went through practice.

"I love being out here but I hate it at the same time because it just makes me want to get out here so bad," said Green, a 6-foot-1, 230-pound Arkansas native who is visiting during his high school's spring break.

With former tailback LenDale White also in attendance, Green looked on as senior Chauncey Washington and sophomores C.J. Gable and Allen Bradford shared most of the repetitions at tailback. Sophomore Emmanuel Moody did not practice because of a pulled hamstring and senior Desmond Reed was slowed by a groin strain.

Those players, along with sophomore Stafon Johnson and possibly senior Hershel Dennis, will attempt to hold off a charge from Green and fellow incoming freshmen Marc Tyler and Joe McKnight during training camp.

Green, the brother of Kansas City Chiefs safety Greg Wesley, said he was not discouraged by the Trojans' depth or the prospect of competition.

This is going to be fun to watch.