clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The Education of Matt Barkley

We have all been amazed at how well Matt Barkley has performed since he arrived at USC. Of course he has had his freshman moments but when Pete Carroll says that Barkley is ahead of of where other freshman quarterbacks at USC were when they came to camp that has to make one take notice.

Barkley had and average scrimmage the other night but I can guarantee that Pete Carroll pulled the defense aside and told them to "sock it to him!" The result were some errant throws but he didn't throw any INT's.

That is a start.

I think a lot of USC fans are still a little shell-shocked that Mark Sanchez is not going to be under center this year and while we all expect a lot out of Aaron Corp there are many who are itching to see Barkley in the game.

There is no question that Barkley is going to improve but it is going to take some time...

USC freshman quarterback Matt Barkley was not the only one given a jolt when he struggled during Monday night's scrimmage at the Coliseum.

The performance also reminded Trojans coach Pete Carroll that Barkley is a true freshman - despite the rave reviews the 18-year-old earned since last spring.

"It was the first time Matt showed he could have a day like that," Carroll said. "He hadn't had a day like that before."

Ironically, the scrimmage probably increased sophomore Aaron Corp's stock, even though he is out with a cracked fibula. Corp is expected to return next week, however, after doctors examined his X-rays Tuesday.

Barkley completed 5 of 18 passes for 109 yards, although Carroll said the Trojans' No. 1defense did an excellent job covering receivers. But the scrimmage also demonstrated Carroll will do whatever is necessary to get Barkley ready while Corp recovers.

This is probably not the best analogy but it is the one that comes to mind right now...if Tiger Woods is going to break The Golden Bear's record he probably needed that loss at the PGA to remind him that he is mortal.

Pete Carroll definitely threw the kitchen sink at Barkley on Monday night to do just that. If anyone thinks Barkley is the anointed one he is going to need to get his clock cleaned in these sorts of situations so that he learns from his mistakes.

It would appear that he is doing just that.

After reviewing the film of Monday night’s 5-of-18 passing performance, USC freshman quarterback Matt Barkley said he played "a little better" than he originally thought.

"But still there were a lot of mistakes," he said.

Barkley said that on several occasions he could have gotten rid of the ball more quickly - which was one of his points of emphasis entering the scrimmage.

Everything in time.

Corp is the starter unless he can't go because of his injury but I am not really worried about that.

Barkley will progress nicely, the coaching staff will bring him along and if Corp can't start Barkley has a pretty solid offense behind him to help build his confidence. He also has a great defense that can do wonders at bottling up opposing offenses.

It isn't the most ideal of situations but I could think of a lot worse...just look across town.