Lane Kiffin thinks Oregon State is a trap game.
- The Beavers are coming off an embarrassing home loss to Washington State, while the Trojans are riding high on the heels of their big win in Tuscon. No worries, right? Wrong. After seeing USC's energy level in practice this week, Lane Kiffin is concerned that the Trojans are looking ahead to the two upcoming rivalry games.
- Despite the flat practice, Kiffin singled out Jurrell Casey and Stanley Havili as two players who always bring their best effort.
- Chris Galippo won back the starting middle linebacker job the old-fashioned way. He kept his mouth shut and played hard. "It's a combination of my patience throughout the year and having a good attitude," Galippo surmised why the coaches moved him up. "When you're patient, I guess good things come."
- Devon Kennard has moved positions twice in his young USC career, but he is not expected to go back to defensive end anytime soon. "Devon Kennard is the future of our program at the 'Mike' linebacker position," LB coach Joe Barry said.
- Both players are expected to contribute a lot on Saturday against Oregon State, where they'll be tasked with tackling Jacquizz Rodgers. "He is a dangerous, dangerous football player," Barry said. "No doubt about it."
- "I wouldn't even say his quickness is his strength, I'd say his balance and his vision," Galippo said about Rodgers. "He's just a heck of a competitor. He's got a chip on his shoulder and he talks a lot."
- At only 5'6", Quizz can be hard to find behind massive offensive linemen. "Where it's tough is when he takes a hand-off, trying to choose which hole he is going to run through," said Galippo, who explained that the Trojans need to be sound in their gap discipline.
- Both Barry and Galippo acknowledged that the linebacking corps has been boosted by the healthy return of Malcolm Smith, who has forced three turnovers in the last two games. "We are seeing glimpses the last two weeks of what I was hoping to get for 13 straight games," Barry said. "It's good to see #6 out there running around and making plays."
- Barry played at USC when Mike Riley was a coordinator on the staff. He has always been a big fan of Oregon State's head coach. "Mike Riley is a lot nicer than I am, I guarantee you that," said Barry, who is one of the nicest coaches you will ever meet. "He might be one of the kindest humans that I have ever run across."
- Here is a less than pleased Lane Kiffin...