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Football News and Notes 7/28

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Just a little over a week before training camp starts and things are starting to heat up!

Mays and Ellison tops in the Pac-10

Ted Miller latest installment in ranking the position players has Taylor Mays and Kevin Ellison #1 and #3 respectively in the Pac-10.

Taylor Mays, Jr., USC: Even among the extraordinary athletes at USC, Mays stands out. He's one of the fastest players in the conference -- at 225 pounds. He'll probably be the first safety taken in Round 1 of the 2009 NFL draft.
Kevin Ellison, Sr., USC: Notable that he was first-team All-Pac-10 in 2007 and Mays wasn't. He had 57 tackles, including eight for a loss, two sacks, two interceptions and two forced fumbles in 2007.

These two are going to intimidate a lot of receivers this season


The All-Carroll Team

Once agaon the OC Register's USC blog has a great feature looking at all the talent that Pete Carroll has recruited while he has been at USC.

Forty-two players selected in the NFL draft. Thirty first-team All-Americans. Three Heisman winners. It’s no debate: in seven years Coach Pete Carroll has shaped USC into the most talented and accomplished program in the nation.

But which players are on the All-Carroll Team? … Let the debate begin.

Check out the best of the best during the Carroll era — where a certain Heisman winner didn’t make the first team — as well as the close calls, and who from the 2008 team might move up on the list.

Here is the First Team!

This is the gift that keeps on giving. Each year that Pete Carroll brings in top talent is another year for more conversation about who is the best. Once again, solid work by the guys at the OCR. They keep putting out great content that is great to read.


Pete on Carson Palmer

Rivals has a nice interview with Pete Carroll (not sure if it's Premium) on the upcoming game against Ohio State and offers his thoughts on Carson Palmer's "rant" on tOSU.

On Carson Palmer's comments about Ohio State

"Obviously, he's been away from me too long. He's just having fun with it. The locker room chatter in the NFL is as much fun as anything else that happens there. The rivalries and the yapping is really for the locker room and not for the media. When it does escape, it's usually awesome stuff. The fact that he's in Ohio, he could've been a little more careful with what he said."

I would agree that it was pretty Awesome to hear Carson "Go Off" on them. He wil have to hear it from the fans in CIncy but he's a big boy so he can handle it.


Thoughts on the season ahead

Chris Dufresne takes a look at both USC and ucla's upcoming seasons. Its a decent read though I take exception at his use of the word "dynasty" in describing Pete Carroll's tenure at USC.

* Aug. 10: USC's first practice in pads.

Linebacker Rey Maualuga volunteers to conduct freshmen-orientation drills.

* Aug. 30: USC opens season at Virginia.

Last time Trojans opened against a Virginia team on the road (2004 vs. Virginia Tech) they finished 13-0 and won the only Bowl Championship Series title of the Pete Carroll "dynasty."

Sarcastic or not it isn't a dynasty. Carroll doesn't think so and neither do I. Its just been a great run


Pinkard on the Mend

While it was Ryan Powdrell's injury that was my first injury write-up, it was Josh Pinkard's injury that inspired The Injury Clinic. Thankfully Pinkard is on the mend and he hopes to be a big part of the secondary tis season.

Carroll said Pinkard is healthy “right now” after he missed most of the past two seasons because of ligament tears in both knees. If anything, Carroll said, the coaches need to be careful not to overload Pinkard in training camp.

“We’ve just go to wait to see how he handles it,” Carroll said. “We don’t need to overwork him.”

Assuming the depth chart holds — no guarantees there either — Pinkard is likely to get most of his playing time as the nickel cornerback. But his size (6-2, 210) and athleticism open myriad possibilities. He began 2005 as a backup safety before starting the final six games at corner.

“He’s such an incredible athlete,” Carroll said. “He’s always been one of my favorite guys because he can do everything so effortlessly. He’s really fast, he’s big and strong. He’s got great savvy, body control, timing, playmaking ability. He’s got all those attributes.

The ACL injury is tough injury to rehab let alone both in consecutive years. He will need to take it easy in order work his back into the rotation. I give Pinkard a lot of credit for sticking it out and finding a way to make it back on the team. He still has a long way to go


Fulmer Cup race getting busy...

...at least for some of SC's upcoming opponents.

UVA had their QB Peter Lalich arrested for DUI. Now it was reported that two more players were arrested over the weekend.

Two Virginia players were arrested, according to this report by NBC29. According to the report, the two men, junior offensive lineman Will Barker and redshirt freshman lineman Dave Roberts, admitted to police to "stealing beer from a cooler at the [Club 216] nightclub."

Barker is listed as the starting right tackle on the preseason depth chart -- one of only two starters returning there -- and Roberts is a walk-on who redshirted last year.

Then it was reported earlier today that Ohio State had their own issue come up over the weekend.

The basics: Ohio State defensive tackle Doug Worthington was nabbed at 3:13 a.m. Saturday morning, and blew between a .08 and .17 on his breath test, over Ohio's legal limit of .08. Usually that's about all the information we get out of these stories, but wait there's more

According to the incident report from OSU police, Worthington was cited for driving his white Cadillac Escalade 41 miles per hour in a 25 mile per hour zone. He was stopped just outside Ohio Stadium, at the intersection of Woody Hayes Drive and Cannon Drive.

I certainly won't pass judgment on these incidents, as SC has had their own in the past, but it does seem like an awfully busy off season.