USC Football News: Fall Camp, Day 4 Practice Notes


Adoree’ Jackson will literally do everything for the Trojans, as head coach Steve Sarkisian confirmed he will be handling both punt and kick returns for USC football this fall.

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Jackson seems an obvious choice after returning two kicks for touchdowns in 2014, but there remain questions about keeping him from burning out with so many responsibilities.

Fatigue was a factor on Monday, but the head coach was happy to see the response from his players who came out with more intensity.

“I thought the guys really responded from a challenge from yesterday,” Sarkisian said. “I thought we came back today re-enthused.”

Tuesday’s practice was noticeably uptempo, with plenty of action on both sides of the ball.

Now let’s dig into the notebook.

Three Stars of the Day

  1. JuJu Smith-Schuster: Smith looked like USC’s number one receiver, taking on all comers from every spot on the field. He had some nice deep catches, including one during the finish challenge to score the offense their second point. Though Kevon Seymour beat him in one-on-one drills one time, Smith was consistently on his game, coming back strong to dominate the day.
  2. Osa Masina: Masina logged a sack, but was impressive in a general sense, taking on leadership responsibilities from the middle linebacker spot. He was all over the place.
  3. Tre Madden: Madden stood out running the ball with the vast majority of reps, especially with Damien Mama leading the way against the first team defensive line, which typically saw Delvon Simmons lined up at defensive end. The redshirt senior looked strong, fast and mobile, with no hint of residual injury rust.

From the Notebook

  • Matt Boermeester continue their kicking competition. Boermeester had a kick blocked by Delvon Simmons. Wood had an attempt for well wide left. Boermeester had an extra kick, is that indicative of being ahead?
  • Viane Talamaivao missed practice again, leaving Chad Wheeler and Nico Falah to handle the majority of reps with Toa Lobendahn moved around from left tackle, left guard and right guard.
  • Jonathan Lockett was the star of the secondary, getting the most of his one on one battles then making big plays in the team period. During one three-play stretch, he had a break up, an interception and a deflection which was called for a very questionable penalty.
  • Ykili Ross hit Ronald Jones II in seven-on-seven drills, dislodging the ball for Uchenna Nwosu to intercept. That play came just after Leon McQuay III picked off Max Browne.
  • Cody Kessler started and ended practice with a couple pinpoint passes to JuJu Smith in tight windows over the middle.
  • The defensive line ups were noticeably scrambled as first teamers and second teamers were mixed and matched throughout the day.
  • The second team offensive line struggled against pressure created by freshmen linebackers Porter Gustin, Masina and John Houston.
  • John Plattenburg sat out with a hip pointer, allowing Marvell Tell to see time with the ones at safety. Noah Jefferson was in a sling after hyper-extending his elbow yesterday. Dominic Davis was back to normal but Justin Davis did not participate, while Quinton Powell was in street clothes.

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