#ALLinNOW: Max Tuerk

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Every team wants to win a championship, but the focus and drive to be ALL IN NOW will separate the contenders from the pretenders in the end. The 2015 Trojans' goal is to focus on dominating every moment, every second, and being accountable for what is in their control.

USC_Strength_conditioning_072215_MCG1017.jpgUSC senior captain Max Tuerk understands the importance of a focused offseason. The center - who is already in the national spotlight with a place on the Rotary Lombardi Award, Rimington Trophy and Outland Trophy preseason watch lists - aims to set a standard as a leader every time he steps foot in the weight room.

"Physically I have been focusing on getting stronger and faster every day and gaining weight," explains Tuerk. "This has been the best offseason I have been a part of since being at USC. The guys have really bought into Coach Ivan's program and there have been huge improvements both mentally and physically."

As a center, Tuerk anchors the offensive line, but his veteran presence both in the locker room and on the field helps guide the rest of the team as well. With all eyes on him, the senior knows its his responsibility to push first.

Salute to Troy Is Near!

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Written by Caroline Deisley, USC blog contributor

Salute to Troy is just around the corner! The annual celebration of past and present USC football teams will be held on August 22 at 6:00 p.m. at Loker Track Stadium and is open to everyone. This year, the 1965 and 1990 football teams will be honored as they celebrate their 50th and 25th anniversaries. Also, the 2015 USC football team will be officially introduced to kickoff the upcoming season.

Click here to RSVP.

Here's USC QB Cody Kessler with more information and an invitation to come out and celebrate...

Double Double

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Written by Caroline Deisley, USC blog contributor

USC junior Andre De Grasse already swept the 100m and 200m at the NCAA Championships in June, but he topped his own performance at the 2015 Pan Am Games last week by sweeping both events again and setting a USC and Canadian record in the 200m. De Grasse's PR of 19.88 broke the USC record of 19.94 that was set by James Sanford in 1980 while also bettering his own Canadian record of 20.03 that he set on May 16. 

Not only did De Grasse sweep his two races for a second time, but he also almost won a third gold medal in the 4X100m relay. The junior sprinter gave Canada the early lead in the second leg of the race and USC alum Aaron Brown won the event as the anchor; however, the victory was protested twice ultimately determining that the Canadian sprinter who began the relay stepped on the line, thereby disqualifying the team. This disqualification gave the USA squad, featuring graduated USC senior BeeJay Lee, the gold medal.

De Grasse Holds Canadian Flag.jpg

One Special Night

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Written by Sarah Bergstrom, USC blog contributor

On Saturday, the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum hosted the 2015 Special Olympics World Games opening ceremonies featuring over 7,000 athletes from 177 countries. USC is one of the main venues for the week-long competition which culminates in the closing ceremonies, also at the Coliseum, on August 2.

For more information on the World Games, including a schedule of events at USC, click here.

First Lady Michelle Obama, Olympians Michael Phelps, Abby Wambach and Michelle Kwan, and ABC's Robin Roberts were among those in attendance on Saturday night to welcome the thousands of athletes to Los Angeles. The Coliseum has long been a host of international competition, first in 1932 and again in 1984 for the Summer Olympics.

Here are all the John McGillen photos from the special night...

Start Your Streak: Marilyn Suazo

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USC home games at the Coliseum are a tradition passed down from generation to generation.

Marilyn Suazo and her family, including her late husband "X-Man," exemplify everything that is great about the Trojan heritage. Since she was a small child, Marilyn's fall Saturdays were spent at the Coliseum, and that mentality is the same for her son Jonathan and her granddaughter Jacqueline (pictured).

Click here to Start Your Streak today!

While most fan bases are referred to as "nations," the Trojan Family is unique because there are so many familiar faces at every event. Thank you all for your undying commitment to this University.


Six for 6

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Written by Caroline Deisley, USC blog contributor

All eyes are on QB Cody Kessler for his final season as he earned his sixth watch list nomination on Thursday. He was named to the 2015 Manning Award Watch List, an award that recognizes the nation's best quarterback. The redshirt senior is also a potential Heisman Trophy candidate and a Preseason All-American nominee. 

This national recognition comes after Kessler finished the 2014 season with one of the best statistical seasons in USC history. Currently, the redshirt senior has a 67.9 career completion percentage and an interception rate of 1.47 which are both better than the career marks for 2004 Heisman Trophy winner and Manning Award recipient Matt Leinart. 


New Voice for Champs

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Ali Wood.jpgAs USC beach volleyball prepares to defend its first national championship, the program has added assistant coach Ali Wood Lamberson, who has 25 years of experience in the sport.

Click here for more.

Lamberson joins the Trojan Family after a year at Tulane and a stint as the head coach for the USA Under-17 Beach National Team, where she guided her women's pairs to gold and silver medals at the inaugural 2014 FIVB U17 World Championship. From 2006 to 2013, Lamberson was the Director of International and High Performance Beach Programs for USA Volleyball.

"Ali is a great fit for our program," said USC head coach Anna Collier. "We have worked together for more than 20 years, including most recently with the USA Junior National Beach Team. She brings a lot of experience and success with her, and will be great for the future of beach volleyball at USC and nationally."

Start Your Streak: Rick Rosales

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The Trojan Family is second to none when it comes to passion. Rick Rosales exemplifies that spirit annually by road tripping multiple times a season from El Paso to Los Angeles to attend USC games.

Click here to Start Your Streak today!

Rosales grew up around the USC campus, going to his first game as a small child and falling immediately in love with the Cardinal and Gold. While he has since moved to El Paso, he refuses to let the distance stand between him and his beloved Trojans in the Coliseum.

Rosales already has tickets for the season opener against Arkansas State and the annual Crosstown Rivalry with UCLA.


Photo Gallery: Summer Hoops

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USC men's basketball continues building its program as year three of the Andy Enfield era officially begins November 13. The offseason workouts are key for this team, which needs to grow in strength and individual skills as one of the nation's youngest rosters grows up.

The Trojans will welcome two big additions this fall, Chimezie Metu and Bennie Boatwright, who are already on campus. The 6-foot-10 freshmen are expected to compete for immediate playing time in the front court, while Louisville transfer Shaqquan Aaron is also practicing despite having to sit out the season.

Also notable in the photo gallery below, sophomore PG Jordan McLaughlin looks healthy after recovering from shoulder surgery. Here is John McGillen's photo gallery of the Trojans' recent workout in Galen Center:

Lovin' Summer

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USC rising senior Andre De Grasse, the fastest man in college, has taken the nation, continent and now the Western Hemisphere by storm this summer after grabbing gold in the 100m at the Pan American Games.

De Grasse ran a blistering 10.05 (+1.1) for his native Canada to pace the field, which included graduated senior BeeJay Lee who finished sixth (10.17) for the United States. Both DeGrasse and Lee will compete in the 200m as well.

Click here for the complete recap.

Recent USC graduate Conor McCullough, who joined De Grasse as an NCAA champion this summer, took third in the hammer throw with a best mark of 241-11 (73.74m). Also, USC alumnus and two-time Olympic gold medalist Felix Sanchez (2004 & 2012) finished in 11th place in the men's 400m IH with a time of 51.07 for the Dominican Republic.

2015 Pan Am 100m Champion Andre DeGrasse! ✌🏾 #TorontoPanAm #Fighton

A photo posted by USC Track & Field (@usc_track_field) on