In an effort to get all of the best defensive personnel on the field at the same time Monte Kiffin has moved Armond Armstead from defensive end to defensive tackle.
Kiffin has always made it clear that the depth chart is fluid, so it's no surprise the defense could be shaken up after a 36-point yield to Hawaii. As of now, the biggest move could be switching Armond Armstead back to defensive tackle from defensive end, which would enable Wes Horton and Nick Perry to play at the same time. They experimented with that front four during parts of today's practice. Basically, Kiffin is trying to put his best four defensive linemen on the field at the same time.
Getting Perry and Horton on the field at the same time with Casey and Armstead makes the defensive line a real monster.
This gives us a lot of speed with Casey and Armstead on the inside and Perry, when he returns from injury, and Horton on the ends it could give opposing QB's something to worry about. This would also get Christian Thomas on the field more as well. This could also be because DaJohn Harris and Loni Fangupo were less than impressive when they were in the game.
The defensive showing against Hawaii continues to be the main topic. I realize that there are reasons for the defenses poor showing but Monte Kiffin and Ed Orgeron aren't going to just take a wait and see approach.
The fact is the defense didn't play well, the coaching staff knows know it and more importantly the players know it...
USC defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin finally addressed the media Tuesday following the Trojans' shoddy performance against Hawaii, but he provided few answers for the debacle.
"I've been hiding for three days," Kiffin joked. "I probably thought about the same thing after watching the film that I saw from the press box. We didn't do very good."
Kiffin said the defense's confidence was dented by Hawaii's 588 yards in total offense.
"Their pride is hurt right now," Kiffin said.
I bet their pride is hurt. After all we heard buring camp that the defense looked great etc., etc.
What we saw was a stark difference from what we thought we were getting on defense...
Lane Kiffin offers up some further thoughts.
"One game will not define us," Kiffin said. "Just like it will not define Matt on offense. Let's take a couple of games before we evaluate, before we make big statements about sides of the ball."
That said, Kiffin understands the concerns over his defense, which looked to be a strength entering the season, no matter a completely rebuilt secondary. The hand wringing over one bad game that, nonetheless, still ended up being a win is understandable, he said.
"That's who we are right now because it happened," he said.
First impressions mean a lot...even if they are inaccurate.
The defense isn't as bad as many think just like the offense isn't as great as many hope it is.
Hawaii's defense was almost as bad as their offense was good. So, Kiffin is right one game doesn't define USC in 2010 but it is also all we have to go on. I say give it another 3-4 games to get a real feel for what we have.
So they have some work to do...
The sky is not falling but the defense needs to get on track fast!