Written by Dave Dulberg, USC blog contributor
The USC men's basketball team split time Wednesday morning between the Galen Center floor and the weight room in preparation for their two-hour trek down the I-5 South to face SDSU tomorrow night...
- F Aaron Fuller was held out of practice on Wednesday to rest his injured left shoulder, but he should be good to go tomorrow night at Viejas Arena. Through two games, the redshirt junior transfer from Iowa is averaging 14.5 points and 7.5 rebounds per game.
- G Alexis Moore's USC debut didn't go quite as planned last Saturday, as he finished 1-for-9 against CSUN. On Monday against the Cornhuskers, however, the freshman was a huge spark off the bench finishing with 11 points in 41 minutes. "I guess as opposed to Saturday, the rim just liked me against Nebraska," said Moore. "I was able to find a stroke but a lot of that has to do with my teammates getting me open. For a young guy like me, Monday was a great chance to learn the do's and don'ts in a tight game."
- Moore on coming off the bench: "Minutes are minutes for me. When my name gets called I need to make the most of my opportunity. I don't really concern myself with whether I start or whether I come off the bench. That stuff is up to KO."
- At Etiwanda HS, G/F Byron Wesley (pictured above by AP/Bret Hartman) was primarily known as a talented perimeter scorer (19.2 points per game his senior year). Since coming to USC, though, Wesley has quickly bought into Kevin O'Neill's defensive philosophy. Through two games, the freshman has been assigned to defend the opposing team's top scorer. "I look at it like a competition," said Wesley. "When I am out there, I think it's fun to guard their best player. I'm not going to try and force my offense right now, I just want to go out there and play hard defensively."
- Wesley on his first collegiate road game: "I'm not worried about it. We've been preparing all week for it. If anything, I am excited to go on the road and play against a tough early season opponent in front of a hostile environment."
- Of late, O'Neill has tried to temper his colorful criticism by relating his team's on-court mistakes to instances in pop culture. Unfortunately for the 54-year-old coach, his definition of "pop culture" seems to clash with the type of movies his team watches. Wednesday was no exception, as not a single Trojan had heard of Burt Reynolds' 1972 classic, Deliverance.
- SDSU is 1-10 all-time against USC. The last time the teams played was in 1999, when the Trojans blew out the Aztecs 87-54 in Steve Fisher's first year. While Fisher's squad lost three of their top five scorers from their 2011 Sweet 16 squad, O'Neill was quick to point out that eight of their current players contributed meaningful minutes a year ago.
- Here's the coach with more heading into USC's first road game of the season...