Moderator (1:06 PM)
Hey everybody, change of plans. Sorry for the confusion but we are actually going to have the Trojans join us at 1:00 PT -- that's 4 p.m. ET. We'll hang on to all the questions that have already come in and any more you send in between now and then. We'll see you at 4 p.m. ET (1p.m. PT)! ...
Moderator (4:02 PM)
Here we go!
Shaun Cody (4:03 PM)
Hey everybody, this is Shaun Cody, USC's defensive tackle. I'm here with Mike Patterson, we're ready for your questions!
HERD SECTION 11, SO CAL
Mr. Cody & Mr. Patterson, I am flying 3000 miles tomorrow to watch you destroy VA TECH on Saturday because I am a loyal Trojan and part of the HERD - What I want to know is what concerns you the most, if anything, about the Hokies offense?
Shaun Cody (4:04 PM)
I think the fact that they have a scrambling QB, he can pop out and get those 15 yards and that's always something you have to be careful of on defensive. We just have to concentrate on controlling their running game.
Mike Patterson (4:05 PM)
I agree, Randall is a great scrambling QB. They are really strong on the line and up front. They are so strong and I expect it to be a really physical game, I just can't wait to get out there and get after it!
Tommy, Omaha, NE
Do either of you ever get to drop back into coverage on any blitz packages, and if you do, do you like it or would you rather rush?
Shaun Cody (4:06 PM)
We have a few schemes that we do drop in, depending on what's going on in the game situation. It's fun to drop back, but, I'd personally rather rush.
Shaun & Mike, how great has it been for you guys to be able to have your parents come out to Howard Jones & Brian Kennedy Fields and be around you for all of your years at USC?
Shaun Cody (4:08 PM)
It's been a great pleasure, my dad is able to come out every day and watch practice, all the guys know him. It's really great. I love seeing a smile on his face. USC wasn't his first choice for me but he loves it now and he loves being able to be close and near to the program.
Mike Patterson (4:09 PM)
It is really fun, my mom and dad haven't come to any practices, they live up north in Sacramento, so they get to the games. My aunts and uncles get to some practices. It's so great having my family involved in this atmosphere, it's so exciting.
Shaun, what was your father's first choice?
Shaun Cody (4:10 PM)
Well, I grew up being a Notre Dame fan. We're Irish so I guess that was a natural thing for him to want me to go there.
nate puyallup, wa
Is there anyone you see in the conference that can give you a run for the pac 10 champion?
Shaun Cody (4:11 PM)
The Pac 10 is tough every year. Cal definitely has a great team this year. We obviously respect them as they beat us last year. But, every team in the conference is always shooting for us, it's so talented and it's realy always a rollercoaster ride. We'll see what happens!
Whats sweeter a victory over the Irish or the Bruins?
Mike Patterson (4:12 PM)
A little bit of both. Right now, it's sweeter over the Bruins b/c it's our cross-town rivalry that we must deal with every day. But of course, we'd like a victory over each of them!
Shaun Cody (4:13 PM)
I'd have to say the Irish, growing up with my dad the way I did an Irish fan, it's especially nice for me to get a victory over them.
Greg, Fairfax, VA
Shaun, I wish you would have gone to ND, we could have used you... What is your favorite rivalry to play in as a Trojan and what stadium has the best atmosphere...Go Irish
Shaun Cody (4:14 PM)
I would say the best stadium to play in is THE COLLESIUM! The atmosphere Pete Carroll has created in L.A., it's just a great thing to be a part of.
Mike Patterson (4:14 PM)
Same here. I love the Rose Bowl, too! It's such a high standard place, I love the atmosphere over there too.
Fight On Mike & Shaun! Can you give us one or two freshman standouts that you think will greatly contribute this year on defense? Beat the Hokies!
Shaun Cody (4:16 PM)
I think definitely Keith Rivers and Jeff Schweiger will bring something this year. They are big guys who can also move fast so I think anytime you have that combination, you will see big contributions.
Mike Patterson (4:17 PM)
Dwayne Jarrett is a really good receiver. He's a good guy, smart on the field, I think that as soon as he finds his rhythm he'll get out there and do some great things for us.
Pierre (San Francisco, Calif.)
What up fellas. Two questions: 1)How has the Mike Williams situation affected the team? And 2)Why will this year's defense be better than last year's defense? Thanks. Go Trojans
Shaun Cody (4:19 PM)
First, you know, we all miss Mike, he was a good friend to a lot of guys and we miss him of course as a player too. We can't focus on this too much b/c we can't control, of course we'd have him back on the team if we could, but we try to move on b/c we really can't do anything about it.
Shaun Cody (4:20 PM)
I don't know if the D will be better than last year's, we haven't started playing yet. We'll see! But, we definitely have a great core group of guys, yes lost some great guys, but we'll look to the veterans to step up and be big leaders this year.
With Omar gone this year, who will keep the DL on edge with their mouth?
Mike Patterson (4:20 PM)
It's hard to replace a guy like Omar on and off the field. If anything, I believe Shaun will do that -- he's a rowdy guy too!
Moderator (4:21 PM)
Shaun would like to respond to that ...
Shaun Cody (4:22 PM)
There is no possible way I could ever replace the mouth from EAst Oakland --Omar Nazel. He is a one of a kind human being with an unstoppable lip and I don't think there will ever be anybody who can stop that man. Everybody in Seattle beware! He's comin!
Bruce, Anaheim Hills, CA
Shaun & Mike: How is Manual Wright? He was heading for a starting spot at DT but has had stomach problems (throwing up). Is he ready to go to back up you two? Is that not an issue or has LoJack (Lawrence Jackson) been that good to start on the outside at DE and keep you Shaun on the inside? Thanks and FIGHT ON!
Shaun Cody (4:23 PM)
He's definitely ready this year -- he is a physical specimen. His stomach bug set him back but he is doing fine right now and should be ready for the game.
Rick, Arcadia, Calif.
After having a National Championship year, then being projected to have another, do you worry about the "let down"? How do the coaches and team address this possibility?
Mike Patterson (4:25 PM)
We're not worried about what's going on. We're focussing on one game at a time. Right now all of our eyes are on Virginia Tech. Sure we all have expectations, but we really take one at a time and just focus on going out there and winning the game at hand.
Will Northridge CA
Which one of you will lead the team in sacks this year? If not one of you who then? Fight On
Shaun Cody (4:26 PM)
Me. It's always fun every year b/c our defensive coach --Coach O -- keeps a running point total of who has the most sacks. It's always fun to come in and see who's winning ... But I'm gonna win!
Dan Pittsburgh PA
Shaun, what position will you play this season DE, DT, or both?
Shaun Cody (4:27 PM)
This year I'll be playing both. We're had some freshman guards step up like Lawrence Jackson and Manny Wright.
Shaun Cody (4:28 PM)
I'd just like to thank everybody out there for all the great questions. Thank for all the support. Stay with the Trojans! Fight on all year!
Billy Bob (Roanoke)
Guys...how many sacks are you gonna get on Mr. Randall? Please don't hurt our QB, we need him for the rest of our games.
Mike Patterson (4:30 PM)
I'm looking forward to getting after Randall! Look out! I can't wait for that game and the fans and getting this season started. We're really excited about this season. Thanks for all of your support and all the questions. Fight on! Go Trojans!!!
Moderator (4:31 PM)
Thanks for all of your questions everybody! Tune in to ESPN at 7:40 p.m. ET when the USC Trojans take on the Hokies of Virginia!