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Corp to have MRI on his bruised knee and some defensive notes

As a precaution, Aaron Corp sat out yesterdays practice sessions as his bruised knee was swollen making it painful and difficult to be mobile.

I am not surprised that the team decided to get an MRI...the technology is there and it will give a definitive answer as to if there is something more significant there.

In the mean time both Matt Barkley and Mitch Mustain took snaps with the first team yesterday and both will do so as well today.

With Corp scheduled for an MRI exam to determine the cause of swelling, it seems unlikely that he will be able to practice this afternoon when the Trojans wear full pads for the first time.

That would provide another opportunity for Barkley, who said he "had a blast" taking the majority of snaps Tuesday, when Mitch Mustain also performed well in Corp's absence.

"I'm hoping he gets back as soon as possible," Barkley said of Corp, "but while he's out, I'm going to try and take advantage of every rep."

Coach Pete Carroll noted that Barkley is still struggling some with calling protections at the line of scrimmage, but the former Santa Ana Mater Dei High star otherwise has impressed.

"He's not shy a bit and he believes very much in his ability to move the club when he gets his chance," Carroll said.

I am not to worked up over this unless it is determined that there is a more significant injury...and I doubt there is.

Of course Barkley is seeing this as a big opportunity and he is reveling in it...

Freshman quarterback Matt Barkley received an extensive amount of snaps without Corp. He didn't throw as sharp as Monday but said he viewed Corp's absence as an opportunity.

"I do believe so," Barkley said. "I had a blast. I'm liking the extra reps. (But) I'm hoping (Corp) gets back as soon as possible."

Carroll said Barkley handled the practice without any significant problems.

The experience will definitely help Barkley but I really don't think that Corp is going to lose his starting job to anything other than an injury this season.

I would be interested in seeing, or hearing, about how the offense responds when Barkley is under center. We have heard so much about how far advanced he is in reading and running the offense but I would love to see what the O line and receivers think of his performance.

In other offensive news check out these videos on rivals...

On the defensive side of ball the one player that everyone wants to see is Chris Galippo. Obviously, it would have been difficult for Galippo to break into the rotation with Cushing, Maualuga and Maiava on the team but now that they are gone Galippo has the opportunity to make his own mark and to continue the tradition of USC's great linebacker history...

Chris Galippo has come out determined to establish himself as the next standout USC middle linebacker - and, just as important, to stay healthy after having back surgeries in consecutive years.

"That’s what I’ve been telling people: This isn’t just any year," Galippo said. "This is play first and get surgery in January."

Finally being injury-free enabled Galippo (above left) to participate fully in USC’s offseason program. The workouts, combined with new eating habits (6-7 small meals a day, water instead of soda), helped him lower his weight to 238 pounds. He weighed 250 during spring practice and 252 last season.

Galippo will have an immediate impact on the defense but there are some others that will make an impression as well like incoming freshman Jarvis Jones. Jones is already turning heads and he could be a major player in the defense in the seasons to come. Shane Horton is having a blast at WLB since moving over from the Safety spot. Mike Morgan, Malcom Smith and Jordan Campbell will all make their presence known as well.

Here is a nice write-up on the defense...

If you were to compile the Pac-10 standings of the past decade, they would pretty much mirror the outcome of our defensive standings (see below).

USC has ruled the conference, and dominates the Defense U standings based on our points system (also see below). The next three – Oregon State, California and Oregon – have consistently produced winning teams and played well in bowl games. UCLA and Arizona State follow, and just like Defense U, they’ve been middle of the pack the past 10 years. The dreck of the conference for most of the past decade are Stanford, Washington, Washington State and Arizona. The Defense U standings say the same.

Some quick-hitting tidbits about Defense U:
  • Some have taken issue with my use of the NFL draft as a barometer in the Position U standings. Just for fun, I eliminated the NFL draft from the equation for Defense U. It doesn’t change a thing. USC is way ahead of Oregon State, and the margins between the remaining teams are roughly the same.

This is a great read like I said...

USC is in a great spot as usual. The talent they bring in always puts them in a position to compete for titles and championships.