Written by Sarah Bergstrom, USC blog contributor
A fast but light week of practice is in the books as the Trojans take to the road to face the Beavers in chilly Corvallis on Friday night...
- Today's practice, although on a Wednesday, was the standard "No Repeat Thursday" for the team, practicing short yardage, goal line, and red zone plays. Once again, the Oregon State marching band and chainsaw noises were pumped into practice to prepare the Trojans for the atmosphere at Reser Stadium.
- An exciting injury update revealed that Marqise Lee and Xavier Grimble are now listed as probable for Friday's matchup. When asked if seeing Lee back on the field gave the team a boost of positivity, Coach Orgeron said, "It sure brightens my mood!"
- Lee's equivalent in Corvallis goes by the name Brandin Cooks, a name heard often in preparing for the Beavers and a name that will assuredly be heard repeatedly on Friday. Cooks leads the nation in receiving yards per game at 157.0, receptions per game at 10.6 and total receiving yards with 1,256. The junior also co-leads the nation for receiving touchdowns with 13.
- The Beavers use Cooks all over their offense and Orgeron said everyone will get their chance to matchup against the talented wide receiver. "They put him all over the field," said Orgeron. "They run fly sweeps with him, they throw the ball, they give him the ball. Everyone will have a shot."
- Although the Trojans face a talented quarterback-receiver duo, Orgeron said the focus is on improving what they can control like fundamentals and problems seen on film.
- The team's mindset this entire week has been playing better on the road. With back-to-back road losses at Arizona State and Notre Dame, the Trojans have spent the week preparing to take care of the task at hand.
- Will a condensed week of practice impact the Trojans' performance in Corvallis? Orgeron doesn't know but he said, "This is the first time as a team that we have been through a short week," he said. "We will see. We feel like we've had a great week of preparation and we are ready to go."
- There will be no special Halloween activities for the Trojans according to the fun-loving head coach. One heartbeat, one team, one focus because after all game day is only two days away.
- USC has not defeated Oregon State at Corvallis since a similarly cold, November game in 2004. Orgeron said the team is ready to hit the road and break that streak this Friday. "I like the mindset of these guys I think they're going to get on the plane ready to go. They understand the task at hand."
Here is Coach Orgeron with a brief post-practice presser...