Oct 10, 2013; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans tailback Javorius Allen (37) leaps into the end zone on a 1-yard touchdown run in the second quarter against the Arizona Wildcats at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

USC Football Roundtable: Given Trojan injury troubles, which back up will make most of opportunity?


USC’s injury concerns going into the Utah game have been well documented. So this week, the Reign Of Troy staff is focusing on the players who have an opportunity to get on the field and shine.

Josh Webb:

It’s gotta be a running back, right? I mean, there are no receivers or tight ends. That really leaves you with only a couple of options. The only way someone else steps up is if it’s at the QB position because Cody ends up going down. The truth of the matter is that we should be asking who is likely to go down next.

I can’t remember seeing a situation like this before in college football. This might be a situation where USC needs to be the safety of the players above all else and limit the risks they take in play-calling. I’m not saying that they should play to lose, but they can’t really be taking risks with guys they don’t have and guys who haven’t seen as much playing time.

Not sure who steps up, but my guess would have to be someone like Buck Allen or Ty Isaac. About the only place where USC had any depth was running back. That’s now being tested for the Trojans. Hedge your bets, pick a back.

Matthew Moreno:

This is kind of a difficult question because in order for someone to have an impact there needs to be an actual player. Given that the injuries have decimated the starters and reserves, there aren’t many options.

That being said, I think Buck Allen will likely have the biggest impact. Allen figured to get an opportunity with Tre Madden banged up and now with the news that Justin Davis is done for the season, Allen’s load should likely increase.

Also keep an eye out for Ty Isaac.  Though, I believe his opportunity may likely come at wide receiver or maybe even as a hybrid tight end.

Alicia de Artola:

If he can get healthy before Saturday, Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick has probably the biggest opportunity to make a name for himself. The injuries to Xavier Grimble and Randall Telfer have opened to door for him to not only start, but be a key member of both the rushing and passing offense. He will be called upon to provide a presence blocking in addition to stepping into a much needed receiving role.

At the end of the Notre Dame game Cope-Fitzpatrick had his chances, but he dropped the ball, literally and figuratively. He couldn’t reel in the catch on third down which would have given the Trojans a first down late, in addition to drawing a false start penalty on hte same drive. Still, the sophomore tight end was on a plethora of All-America teams in high school and was a four-star recruit according to Rivals. Now is as good a time as any to live up to that praise.

Personally, I think it would be an awesome, albeit unlikely, story if athletic department intern turned walk on Robbie Kolantz came up with a touchdown or two.

Michael Castillo:

After news on Wednesday that Lamar Dawson’s season is over, I’m going to say Anthony Sarao. His playing time has been much more limited this year than last year when he filled in for Dion Bailey and Hayes Pullard at times, and he’s proved to be a capable starter in spurts. Now’s when he’s going to have the chance to play that starting linebacker role to fullest and show that he can beat out guys like Dawson and Michael Hutchings next season. He’s an aggressive guy that fits into the mold of a weakside linebacker, and if he compliment Pullard’s leadership with a quick, aggressive presence, then he can look to fill in for Dawson effectively. Also, look for Bailey to play a bigger role on defense. He’s been a roving nickel/linebacker hybrid, and he could be an asset here at linebacker, with depth at safety in the form of Leon McQuay III and Demetrius Wright.

What do you think? Which back up will have the biggest performance on Saturday? Join the comments below.

Tags: Buck Allen Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick Ty Isaac USC Trojans