Washington Tuesday: Notes

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The Trojans prepare for their fourth road game in their last five contests.

  • Lane Kiffin has been happy with the last three weeks of practices.  The Trojans blocked a lot of field goals (Tony Burnett pictured) during special teams.
  • Robert Woods was in good spirits again today talking about getting knocked out at Utah.  He has passed concussion tests every day since the incident. 
  • Burnett-Wash-Tues-McG.jpgWoods version of the events: "I don't know what happened to the other guy.  I just got jacked up, so let me get up and make him not feel good like he didn't daze me.  The whole time I was kind of like gone.  Once I hit the ground the second time, I was like now I'm good."
  • Lane Kiffin and John Baxter made a small change at holder with QB Cody Kessler replacing Matt Barkley.  More than anything, it gives Kessler an opportunity to stay engaged in the game despite being a third stringer.  "It's kind of cool just having responsibility now," Kessler said.  "I have to stay ready at all times."
  • Kessler is developing a rapport with PK Andre Heidari.  Despite what you may have seen in "Ace Ventura" though, he was told never to spin the football.  "He wants it tilted a little bit," Kessler said.  "It's cool working with Andre both being from Bakersfield." 
  • Senior OG/C Abe Markowitz is enjoying his first extended run of playing time.  "I'm happy to be healthy," he said. "I'm happy not to be on 'Muscle Beach' with those other studs."  ("Muscle Beach" is the rehab area at practice.)
  • Markowitz is a valuable member of the offensive line because of his versatility.  He stayed long after practice working on snapping with QB coach Clay Helton.  "You've got to be perfect in both," he said.  "Center is obviously harder to master than guard, so you've got to put in extra work."
  • The offensive line struggled at times with the loud atmosphere in Utah.  The unit improved as the game progressed, and they will need another strong effort at a raucous CenturyLink Stadium Saturday.  "Communication is hard.  After a few hiccups, we figured it out.  We had our verbal and visual cues to one and other and got things done."
  • As for the 14 penalties as a whole, Lane Kiffin is focused on reinforcing his message of discipline.  "Really continue to do what we've been doing: stress it, post it, focus on it, crowd noise.  The same stuff we did last year.  It will turn around."
  • Lane Kiffin answered lots of questions about the upcoming contest with Washington in his daily scrum.  Listen in...

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