Shades of last season...I guess the third practice of training camp is going to be our unlucky number.
You could imagine my concern when I read late last night that starting QB Aaron Corp had a player roll over his knee causing Corp to miss a few plays.
Everything seems to be OK now but I am sure initially it was quite a scare, but not similar to what we all went through last season.
On Monday, with the Trojans practicing in shoulder pads for the first time, Corp went down after a teammate rolled into the quarterback's left knee during a scrimmage drill. The sophomore, who entered camp listed No. 1 on the depth chart, returned and ran a few plays, including a couple requiring scrambles.
"No big deal," Corp said of the mishap.
With Corp briefly sidelined and Mustain absent from practice to attend a class, freshman Matt Barkley seized an extended opportunity to keep the pressure on Corp for the chance to start Sept. 5 against San Jose State.
No Big Deal my eye!
And wouldn't you know it...Barkley steps in to get a few more reps
It is clear that Corp is the guy but with Barkley continuing to get reps he is hot on Corp's heels.
Perhaps it was a coincidence but freshman Matt Barkley enjoyed his best day of camp with no interceptions and a couple touchdown passes. Barkley said he did not get too eager when Corp went down.
"I think I still take it one play at a time," he said. "Because something could happen to me and I could be out."
Even though Corp is clearly the starter, Barkley said he remains convinced he can start this season.
"I do believe I can start against San Jose State," he said. "I'm not going to let down even if I don't start that game."
USC coach Pete Carroll praised Barkley even though he was erratic the first two days because he is far ahead of any previous freshmen.
I know I have said it a million times but this is going to be fun to watch. I think the competition is only going to get more fierce. You get the sense that Barkley will not be denied and that he wants this bad. He still needs to settle down and make smar throws but if he is grasping the playbook ahead of any other freshman QB of the Pete Carroll era at USC then you know it won't long that if Corp stumbles Barkley will fill the breach.
I don't really know what to make of Mustain right now...I just hope he gets comfortable enough to viable option in case the world comes off its axis and we need a third option. It is pretty clear to me that he is a distant third on the depth chart and to me that very surprising.