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Thursday, September 30, 2010
Jesse Scroggins is finding his way

By Pedro Moura

Freshman Jesse Scroggins was a big-time prospect as a high school quarterback coming out of Lakewood (Calif.), but, upon his arrival at USC, he found himself a bit lost.

Lost in the playbook, mostly -- but also in living on his own for the first time in his life, something he doesn't shy away from talking about.

"At first, it got overwhelming," Scroggins said Wednesday in his first meeting with the media since arriving at USC. "Real overwhelming."

But, slowly but surely, the 6-foot-3, 205-pound pocket passer has grown comfortable with his surroundings. It helps that he has two of the more mature players on the team in front of him in Matt Barkley and Mitch Mustain.

It also helps that Scroggins himself -- 18 years old and all -- is remarkably mature, from his speaking style to the approach he takes when learning the game.

"It's a job," he says succinctly. "You gotta treat it as one.

"It's your career."

Scroggins, who is playing the part of Washington quarterback Jake Locker during scout-team drills in practice this week, also talked Wednesday about the pressure he felt on the field at the start of training camp.

His first scrimmage performances were absolutely dismal, but he's definitely turned it up some in limited snaps since. This week, he's gotten to throw the ball much more than usuaul in practice.

"I just felt like I needed to make an impression, but they said you don't need to make an impression," Scroggins said of what his fellow quarterbacks and offensive linemen told him. " 'You're young, you're just getting in here, you don't know too much. So just be you.' "

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See what else Scroggins said in the interview, including his comments on Washington coach Steve Sarkisian and his quarterbacks coach, Clay Helton: