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Trojans News
Lane Kiffin, Trojans assistants hit recruiting road
USC football: Restarting the USC running game
Monte Kiffin hurting over USC's struggles
Trojans Expecting WSU's 'Best Shot'
Kiffin returns to Minnesota with USC
Lane Kiffin, players are coping with Southern Cal's football sanctions
Marc Tyler, a Trojans linebacker?
USC Football | Trojans tailback Allen Bradford sliding down the depth-chart
USC FOOTBALL: Freshman Woods could start season opener
USC football: Sorting out the safeties
It's offense vs. defense in USC spring game
USC football: ‘We’ve been too loose with the ball’
Taylor Mays Named Walter Camp All-American
USC, Florida, LSU shine in game's 'Golden Era'
Packers sign first-round draft pick Matthews, leaving only Raji unsigned
Browns sign 4th-round pick LB Kaluka Maiava, still in talks with first-round pick C Alex Mack
Smith, Miller healthy again for Hogs
Draft picks Kyle Moore and E.J. Biggers agree to deals with Buccaneers
2009 USC Coaches Tour Ready To Kick Off
Cincinnati Bengals 2009 NFL Draft Review
Brown on radar as draft nears
Teams figure to be lining up for USC linebackers
Trojans' quarterback Barkley getting into a groove
Seahawks' interest in USC pro day no joke
2009 NFL Draft Preview: Mark Sanchez
Two Trojans qualify for championships
Southern California QB Sanchez to enter NFL draft
USC's Williams Seeking NFL Draft Feedback
Paterno wants to be back on sidelines against Trojans
Sooner offense vs. Trojans’ D: the dream bowl we’ll never see
Irish and Trojans meet in milestone matchup
USC's Jeff Byers seeks another year of eligibility
Trojans expect to see Riley at QB
USC holds off Arizona 17-10
Sanchez's family meets with adviser on NFL
USC secondary wants to see the ball in the air
CFB: USC tries to bounce back against Oregon
College football: Troy Trojans not afraid of Ohio State Buckeyes
Buckeyes RB Wells doubtful vs. USC
Fornataro Turning Heads at USC
USC's speed has Cavaliers worried
Bush, Williams meet again in joint practice
USC's Joe McKnight injures hand in dorm accident
Weis focuses on diving into new season
USC No. 2 in coaches' poll
Southern Cal Inside Slant
Finding Value With College Football Futures
NCAA Football: NFL-style coach might vault QB into starring role
Jaguars Sign Draft Pick
Ranking the nonconference schedules
Early season ACC football kickoffs announced
Dolphins sign three draft picks; add USC center
Carroll, Tressel helped define first 10 years of BCS era
Long Beach man is a real Gladiator
Carroll, Tressel helped define first 10 years of BCS era
Kickoff Times, TV Plans Set For 6 USC Football Games In 2008
USC's deep all around as the football team heads to scrimmage
Spurrier receives Davey O'Brien Legends Award
Three Former Trojans Are Playing In The Arena Football League
Candidates line up to be NFL draft's top pick
USC Football Team Seeking Spring Walk-On Candidates
Sedrick Ellis (DT)
Trojans again finish strong in recruiting
Seven locals earn football honors
No. 1 recruit Perry enjoys visit to USC; Michigan next
Norton turns down UCLA, will remain at USC
USC guard Rachal likely leaving
Illini come up thorns: USC's weapons too much for Illinois in Rose Bowl
TROJANS ARE IN FULL BLOOM
Booty and USC out to bounce Fighting Illini
USC linemen afraid of Disneyland rides
USC players appear to be losing interest in Rose Bowl
USC gives some ground on Coliseum
USC's Ellis is a first-team All-American
USC Football Notebook:
No. 8 USC vs. UCLA
USC in talks to move Trojans from Coliseum to Rose Bowl
USC stays in Rose Bowl hunt with Arizona State thrashing
USC is still standing
Longshore has something to prove in Cal's final games
Patience pays off for USC return man Johnson
Defense, Washington keyed USC win
No. 12 USC (7-2, 4-2) at No. 24 Cal (6-3, 3-3) 5 p.m. Ch. 7
Maualuga, Cushing say they'll return for final seasons
Booty to start at quarterback for USC
USC football: Mitchell is Jekyll and Hyde
Weber: Who's Afraid of USC Now?
USC Understands This Week's Challenge
Oregon's Bellotti doesn't see quarterback choice as a problem for USC
USC's Booty feels good in practice
USC debuts in BCS standings at No. 14
USC goes to backup plan
Gimino: USC dynasty far from over
Wilner: No. 1 USC vs. No. 2 Cal? Could happen
Could USC vs. Cal be a matchup of No. 1 vs. No. 2?
UW Football Notebook | Carroll was key to Mays leaving
Davis is on the receiving end of attention
USC's Turner has work to do
Question of the week: OU, LSU or USC?
USC wary of upset
USC's Washington wants to return
Coliseum to host non-USC football
NCAA Football Preview - U-S-C Trojans
You can count on this in college football
USC Football Heavy With Special Admits
USC Players Report Today
USC gets deferential treatment from Pac-10 coaches
Trojans' competition limited to rhetoric
Even at SEC event, Pac-10 draws notice
Brinkley highlights 5 from USC on All-SEC
Soward seeks a 2nd chance
KSPN (710 ESPN)/Los Angeles Extends USC Deal to 2011
'RoJo' arrives, but let's keep pressure off
Pac-10 football: The best coaches of the past 20 years
Monte Vista standout picks USC
Time to fight for USC broadcast rights
South Carolina Football Coaches On The Recruiting Trail
Timing is everything for USC quarterback recruit
Stevens to attend USC camp
It’sofficial!
Carroll swears there's no place like USC
Coliseum Commission still pondering possible NFL arrival
Spurrier eyeing first S.C. quarterback
Clemson, USC sack their fans
Football coaches debate early signing period
The Great Scott
USC football notes: Barrett fails to remain eligible
USC football | Newton heading north - way north
Should Reggie Bush Be Forced To Talk
BC, USC close to renewing football ties
Move Those Chains: NFL Draft edition
Giants looking at drafting receivers
Trojan NFL draft preview
Receiving class could tempt Bears
Deputies investigating whether USC players were involved in weekend shooting
Ralph Heywood, 1943 All-American End, Dies
Meyer attends Trojan Huddle
USC Football Notebook: Receiver Holland injures collarbone
Harbaugh stands by words
USC NFL Pro Timing Day
UCLA Predicts 20 Point Football Victory over USC
Skip Holtz returns
Kalil stands out
Spurrier: "Stephen Got Himself Into a Tough Spot"
NFL Combine
Football in February
Early arrivals become fashionable
USC reloads on signing day
Saints assistant joins USC football staff
Parade Magazine names Aaron Corp to All-American football team
Football is out of control
Bush's USC story may just be beginning
Raiders Hire USC's Lane Kiffin
USC bashing aside, let's talk about what's really important
USC adjusts game schedule
USC picks up two commitments from Florida
2007 Preseason rankings
USC s Rivers not entering NFL draft
Carroll staying at USC
Wide receiver transfers from Arkansas to USC
Reality check
USC win validates BCS title matchup
USC Makes Strong Argument With Rose Bowl Performance
USC Puts A Pedal to Its Offense
Trojans focused on return to winning By Bruce Feldman
BKC Washington USC Preview
Jackson to return to Trojans
A different kind of game
USC Saving the best for Last
Michigan can get cancelled by USC
USC Trojans back on track
Pac-10 Football: USC: A shell of its former self or primed to break out vs. Oregon?
USC football notes: Ducks big test for Maualuga
Oregon-Southern California Preview
Trojans are trying to get tighter grip
Huskies focus on turnovers
Trojans are taken aback by Stanback
Dawgs remain wary of 3rd-ranked USC
Scouting Report: USC vs. Washington State
Tired Trojans are glad to be home
USC uses Mckay’s coaching formula
Yonus Davis a name to watch for
USC files a complaint on Musburger
USC Trojans wins over Nebraska Huskers
Jones guarantees sure win against USC Trojans
Huskers No. 19 a star in the making
USC vs. Nebraska – The much awaited game
Forward Progress
USC Strong, Colorado flops in 1st Week
Nothing but USC football
Sun Devils Have One-Sided Concerns
Newcomers show ability to impress
Gamecocks Have Secret Weapon at Defensive End
Exit Interview: Ryan and Brandon Ting
Ting brothers to leave USC football team
Cal poised to challenge USC atop Pacific-10
USC still the team to beat
Pigskin Poets event kicks off at the library
College football kicks off
USC Player sues school
Holland improves his chances to get into USC
Top recruits commit
USC football: Lewis won't be back
Cassel confident as Brady's backup
USC May Be Spoiler in NFL Coliseum Plan
Recruiting Week in Review
Celebrating an American Original
Rough at home, but not impossible
Sanchez will not face charges
LA Sports & Entertainment Commission's 4th Annual NFL 101/201
Dates remain same for Huskers' 2006 season
Representatives fail to serve best interests of Reggie Bush
Taylor a striking figure for Valencia
Ex-Wilson star Perez knows what is important
Bush To Wear #25
Reggie Bush Can't Wear 5
SC Athletic Hall of Fame inducts eight members
High hopes selling tickets for Saints, Cardinals
Suspect says he did not shoot Francis
Saints watch Bush
Vince, Reggie and Matt still the darlings of the football crowd
Changing of the QB : Razorbacks won’t have to face three NFL draftees
USC’s Ryan Francis killed in Baton Rouge
USC football notes: Factors help out Sanchez
Morning Briefing
UCLA Hosts USC For Three-Game Pac-10 Series
Death Of Former USC Football Player Ruled Accidental
USC Football scrutinized
USC housing under investigation
Paris Hilton - Now Dating USC football star
Raiders pick up heralded safety
Draft Surprises Are the Least of U.S.C.'s Recent Concerns
What's the deal with LenDale White?
USC Trojans (Booty to return earlier than expected)



2006 USC News


Trojans focused on return to winningBy Bruce Feldman

LOS ANGELES -- As much as the USC Trojans players tried to avoid something like it, the sign was impossible to miss. A cluster of Trojans were walking, heads bowed, toward their locker room after a 13-9 loss to archrival UCLA ended their chance to play in the BCS title game, when a pretty brunette screamed.

Instinctively, the players looked into the crowd and there it was, a big sign in blue ink: "Welcome back to reality, Trojans. Enjoy the ride down! Just ask Miami, the view won't be so pretty any more."

On the Rose Bowl turf, UCLA players were making statements like "Dynasty Done!" to anyone who would listen.

Perhaps the Bruins were getting a little ahead of things. Maybe it was just wishful thinking. But make no mistake, there are some internal concerns about whether the USC Trojans program is on the brink of a downward spiral.

The loss to UCLA not only ruined the Trojans' bid to win their third national title in four seasons, but it also marked the end of an amazing NCAA-record streak of 63 games in which they had scored 20 or more points. It was the low point of a very inconsistent season for a team that was supposed to be carried by its defense. However, the defense just didn't make a lot of big plays. The Trojans were only fifth in the Pac-10 in sacks per game (2.42) and seventh in third-down defense (38.1 percent conversion rate). They were also sixth in turnover margin (plus .25 per game). No star player emerged.

The offense was nowhere near as dangerous as 2005. Of course, that had to be expected, right? After all, USC Trojans did lose two Heisman Trophy winners from last year's team, quarterback Matt Leinart and tailback Reggie Bush. Still, no one expected the Trojans to lose to two unranked teams, Oregon State and UCLA. USC Trojans lost games it had been finding ways to win.

No wonder the Trojans' matchup with Michigan in the Rose Bowl presented by Citi is so vital to USC Trojans. There is also plenty of talk that this game is a battle for No. 1 … in 2007. Both Ohio State and Florida will lose their starting QBs, while the Wolverines and the Trojans both figure to return a strong nucleus. USC Trojans has heard positive news from many of the junior players who are considering a jump to the NFL. Star tackle Sam Baker says he is coming back next year. Defensive end Lawrence Jackson and nose tackle Sedrick Ellis say they are, too.

Most expect superstar wide receiver Dwayne Jarrett to leave, which would hurt since USC Trojans already will be losing senior Steve Smith on the other side. Center Ryan Kalil actually might be even harder to replace. But the defense should be better and quarterback John David Booty will have another year of experience. The Trojans figure to return seven starters on offense and 10 on defense to play a road-heavy schedule. Plus, we keep hearing about all of these great No. 1 ranked recruiting classes USC Trojans has stockpiled. And yes, the Trojans appear to be on their way to another ballyhooed recruiting class again this February.

It all sounds fantastic, but it would become a very long offseason if the Trojans can't stand up to Michigan. This is a crossroads game for USC. The Trojans must finish this season off on a strong beat. They have to snuff out any lingering doubt that grew from the UCLA debacle, which was indicative of a very un-Trojan-like season.

"I don't think we have to prove it to other people, I think we have to prove it to ourselves," conceded Booty. "It's all about us and we want to get this taste out of our mouths and get back on the winning track. We're really not trying to prove anything to anybody else."

"It's almost like it's something you have to do," added Jarrett. "You have to be forced to move on and look past that and I think if you sit and dwell on it, history is going to repeat itself. That is what we've done. We had that week off to get over it, and then we went back to work. We're over that loss and we've been focusing on Michigan ever since
and we're ready to play."

Over the past month Lane Kiffin, USC's offensive coordinator, and Booty came under some fire locally for the flat performance. The Bruins' defense rattled a Trojans O-line that appeared flawed. It wasn't so much the two sacks. It was four false starts and a bunch of other big hits on Booty, who struggled under the heat. It's a blueprint Michigan with its awesome defensive front figures to follow. The Wolverines did lead the Big Ten in sacks this season with 3.42 per game. Booty, the Pac-10's top passer with a 25-9 TD-INT ratio, says he isn't worried about the pressure or about the criticism. That is part of the deal, he says, when you're the starting quarterback of a high-profile team. The challenge is getting things going again.

USC assistant head coach Steve Sarkisian thought the whole offense was "hesitant" in the UCLA game. Yet, no one inside the program can explain why.

"I really can't," Booty said. "I've thought about it for quite some time and I kind of had to finally let it go and not worry about it anymore. I've got to focus on what we've got going now. I really can't answer that. I don't know why that happened, but that's why you play the game. You hate to lose that one but you've got to move on."

Of course, maybe it was just inevitable. USC had won 34 consecutive games and back-to-back national titles before its loss to Texas in the 2006 Rose Bowl. Miami had a similar run. The Canes won 34 consecutive games during 2000-02, before an overtime loss to Ohio State in the 2003
Fiesta Bowl. A wicked tailspin followed. The Canes went from going unbeaten in 2001, to losing one game in 2002, two games in 2003 and three games in both 2004 and 2005. Miami has dropped six games this season. Given
how well USC Trojans supposedly has recruited, it's hard to imagine the Trojans sinking like Miami did. Then again, who predicted the Canes would fall that hard?

Some former Miami coaches say it is virtually impossible to sustain that level. Great players jump to the NFL early. Assistant coaches move on. Younger players don't know what it took to get to that level. Worse still, they say, it takes a whole lot of great breaks to win 34 straight and eventually the breaks start going the other way. It is all such a delicate mix.

As usual, head coach Pete Carroll doesn't seem worried though. "We've always bounced back," Carroll said. "I really don't expect anything different this time around."


[More at espn ]

 

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