USC: Willie McGinest

Looking back at Junior Seau's USC career

May, 2, 2012
Former USC and NFL linebacker Junior Seau died Wednesday at his Oceanside home from a gunshot wound in his chest, authorities said.

He was 43. He is remembered primarily for his professional successes in his 20-year NFL career, most of which was spent with his hometown San Diego Chargers. But he also left quite a legacy up the road at USC, where he spent three years in the 1980's and starred for two seasons, leading the Trojans to a Rose Bowl win.

Wednesday's news shook up the USC community quite a bit, with tons of current and former players tweeting their surprise and sadness upon hearing the news. It also brought back memories of Seau's time with the Trojans, spanning from 1987-1989.

Seau sat out of his freshman season in 1987 because of academic restrictions. He reportedly scored a 690 on the SAT, 10 points lower than the 700-minimum needed to secure eligibility. Then he struggled with injuries his sophomore season before exploding onto the scene as a junior in 1989.

Totaling 19 sacks, he was named an unanimous All-American and Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year, then declared early for the NFL draft and was selected fifth overall by the San Diego Chargers the following April.

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2012 spring game recap

April, 14, 2012
LOS ANGELES -- Matt Barkley didn't have a great day at the Coliseum for the USC Trojans' annual spring game on Saturday, but he did do a lot more than expected, based on the other scrimmages USC has played this spring.

Two weeks ago, he didn't even attempt a single pass. A week ago, he largely gave way to backups Cody Kessler and Max Wittek.

This time, the senior signal-caller completed 23-of-39 pass attempts for 212 yards, one touchdown and one interception in what was by far his most participated-in scrimmage of the spring. He threw three times as many passes as Kessler (3-of-6 for 68 yards) and Wittek (3-of-7 for 27) combined.

USC coach Lane Kiffin indicated the decision to use Barkley so much was based on two factors: 1. The Trojans weren't tackling, to keep injuries at a minimum; 2. They were getting some offensive weapons back healthy that hadn't been on the field for a scrimmage in weeks.

Tight end Xavier Grimble and receiver De'Von Flournoy were among the players who participated who hadn't suited up in recent weeks.

For the game, score was kept in an offense vs. defense fashion, with the Trojans' defensive players awarded three points for stops on drives and five points for turnovers. The defense won, 34-27, with the offense scoring three touchdowns and two field goals and the defense stopping eight drives and collecting two turnovers.

Barkley was asked after the scrimmage if he felt as if, at the end of the spring, the Trojans are a national-championship contending team.

"Not yet," Barkley said. "Not anywhere close to that yet. We still have a lot of work to do to get there. Based off talent, you might say that, but there's a lot more that goes into that than talent."

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C. Kessler452315382639
B. Allen27614895.411
J. Davis1295954.64
N. Agholor104131312.612
J. Smith5472413.45