Oct 13, 2012; Seattle, WA, USA; Washington Huskies wide receiver Kevin Smith (8) is hit by USC Trojans safety Josh Shaw (26) while carrying the ball after making a reception during the 2nd half at CenturyLink Field. Southern California defeated Washington 24-14. Mandatory Credit: Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports

USC 2012 Evaluations: DB Josh Shaw

Stats:: 13 games played, 2 interceptions, 30 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 6 passes broken up

What Stood Out: Florida transfer Josh Shaw’s decision to join the ranks of Troy gave USC much needed depth to the secondary. He got a few looks at safety, his native position, this season but he really showed his worth when he filled in at cornerback in the absence of Torin Harris. Shaw has shown he can make plays, be it interceptions or jamming receivers and batting down balls. He is very athletic and nimble, which suggests that he could very well develop into a consistent presence in the secondary. He’s only a sophomore, so expect him to only improve in 2013 under the new leadership of Defensive Coordinator Clancy Penderglast, who is also doubling as the defensive backs coach.

What Needed Work:Like most of the members of the Trojan secondary over the past couple of seasons, Shaw could have been more prolific. The instances in which he stood out where few and far between, and he had his share of missed tackles and blown assignments. Chalk it up to still learning a new system, but Shaw still needs to define himself as a reliable defensive back.

Final Word:Despite his own struggles, Shaw was USC’s second-most productive cornerback after Nickell Robey, which says a lot about the skill in the Trojan secondary, when you consider that Shaw came to USC to play safety. It has yet to be determined if Shaw will stay at corner or finish his career with SC as a safety, though it would reason that it is contingent on how well new DBs Su’a Cravens, Leon McQuay III and Chris Hawkins perform during Spring Ball. Regardless of how it shakes down, look for Shaw to make himself known in 2013.

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