Camp Practice 8: Notes

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The intensity continues to rise on Howard Jones Field, but tonight's practice came at a cost.

  • DE Nick Perry hobbled off the field with "knee and ankle" injuries during a brutally physical goal line drill. "It was probably the most severe as far as having to get checked out" of all the day's injuries according to Kiffin.  Robert Woods (knee), Hayes Pullard (knee) and Simione Vehikite (neck) were also pulled from practice due to injury. 
  • Off the field, freshman RB Dillon Baxter was suspended for the first game against Hawaii due to a violation of team rules.  "I think this is an extremely strong message, a very severe punishment, for a player that may be our most potentially skilled player on our whole roster to miss his first game," Lane Kiffin announced to the media after practice.
  • Baxter will continue to practice with the team, but Kiffin is undecided on whether or not he will join the team in Hawaii.
  • On a more positive note, Markeith Ambles responded favorably to his punishment and enjoyed one of his best practices to date.  He really stood out in a two-minute drill late in the session. 
  • "If someone said right now, 'Who is probably the surprise of camp?'  I would say Marc [Tyler] would be the guy," Kiffin inquired of himself.  He likes Tyler's versatility for a big back.
  • Tyler was the primary runner in the short yardage drills, which saw Devon Kennard fly threw a gap and make a stand.  The defense erupted every time they kept the offense from scoring.
  • Matt Barkley and Mitch Mustain threw back-to-back interceptions and took their lap around the field together.
  • The coaching staff is enamored with Armond Armstead.  A day after comparing the massive defensive end to Michael Strahan, Kiffin said that Armstead can dominate the line unlike any player he has seen at USC since Kenechi Udeze.  Even more, Kiffin believes that Armstead's return to health has swung the practice balance of power from the offense to the defense. 
  • Watching one-on-one drills, it's clear that DT Jurrell Casey will demand a double team, which will free up opportunities for the rest of the front seven to make plays.
  • In those same drills, former walk-on center Abe Markowitz stayed strong against freshman DT George Uko's bull rush.  Markowitz has not gotten complacent since receiving his scholarship at the start of camp.
  • Click here to watch the portion of practice that we aired live today on
  • Here is a photo gallery of today's practice through the lens of Farren Benjamin.

1 Comment

Dillion made a big mistake for a football player of any school. I'm sure many of them make this mistake and don't get caught, but Dillion is special. He has a chance to be a top 5 draft pick and make a mint. He really needs to focus and not make stupid decisions.

He is possibly better than Reggie (79 touchdowns in one season is the state record - that means he hit pay dirt about 6 times a game!). He will be incredibly exciting to watch, but he needs to do it right for himself and his family as well as for his school. I really hope he can get it together!

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