Camp Preseason Game #3: Notes

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And so camp ends and so Hawaii game week begins...

  • The Trojans came through the 111 play scrimmage fully healthy, although Allen Bradford, David Ausberry, Butch Lewis, Khaled Holmes, Nick Perry, T.J. Bryant, Kyle Prater, Brandon Carswell and others did not participate.  Bradford will be fine.  He should return to practice at the beginning of next week.
  • All the stats are on the post below this one.
  • As for the highlights, one-handed catches were the star attraction.  De'Von Flournoy reeled in a 59-yard TD pass from Mitch Mustain with only his left arm.  Brice Butler snagged a TD with just one limb.  And, Ronald Johnson fought off great coverage from Torin Harris to make a diving TD catch on the sideline.
  • The defense managed to force six turnovers (four picks and two fumbles) in a scrimmage without contact.  Shareece Wright took a Matt Barkley interception to the house, while Hebron Fangupo swallowed a batted ball from a Mitch Mustain pass for a rare defensive tackle interception. 
  • On the subject of playing time and depth charts, Lane Kiffin announced that they do not have a starting running back.  While it was widely assumed that Allen Bradford was the lead dog, Kiffin put some pause into that during his post-game media session.  With Bradford out, Marc Tyler had an opportunity to campaign for the position.
  • Robert Woods looks like the starting receiver opposite Ronald Johnson.  The freshman took most of his reps with the first team offense.
  • Nickell Robey was the starting corner tonight and cemented his case with pass deflections on each of the first two series.  Torin Harris plays the outside corner in nickel, while Robey slides inside.
  • Speaking of Harris, he had the sequence of the night.  He made an acrobatic interception immediately following Johnson's touchdown catch, which beat his blanket coverage.
  • With Jesse Scroggins waiting to be cleared, redshirt sophomore John Manoogian is the third string quarterback.  He completed three passes on his one drive before being picked off by Dion Bailey.
  • The first team offense was mostly dominated by the first team defense.  The passing game was limited to horizontal screens and underneath receivers.  "Our defense has been doing a really good job of taking away the deep threat as opposed to spring when we seemed to be hitting everything," Matt Barkley said after the game.  The QB also said that the front seven forced him to throw a bunch of balls away.
  • For the beginning of the second half, Barkley and Mustain switched teams.  Immediately, Barkley went vertical and covered the length of the field on three pass completions.  In short, it's a defense thing not a quarterback thing.
  • The coaches that will sit in the press box sat atop the baseball field for the game.  Wide receivers coach John Morton, tight ends coach Keary Colbert, defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin and defensive backs assistant Sammy Knight are the four coaches that will sit atop the Coliseum.
  • Monte Kiffin was still able to yell at the referee from his perch after a questionable pass interference call. 
  • Practice ended on a Joe Houston made field goal, which sent the players into a frenzy.  Something was on the line and the right-footer delivered.
  • Here are the photos from tonight's scrimmage as shot by Farren Benjamin.
  • And here's your quarterback's evaluation of tonight's contest...

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