USC Trojans: Cal Bears
Have a nice weekend, folks.
- Nelson Agholor's big second half gave USC the cushion it needed for Arizona, Jon Gold writes in the Arizona Daily Star.
- Todd Graham vows that ASU will play more aggressively, Doug Haller writes in the Arizona Republic.
- Cal's offense throws and throws, but that doesn't translate into winning, Chris Foster writes in the Los Angeles Times.
- Colorado's Addison Gillam continues to fly under the radar, Kyle Ringo writes in the Daily Camera.
- Stanford backup quarterback Dallas Lloyd will have fans in Utah, Tom FitzGerald writes in the San Francsico Chronicle.
- Oregon expects better focus from the start Saturday, Andrew Greif writes in the Oregonian.
- The Oregonion's Connor Letourneau compares Oregon State's Sean Mannion and Washington State's Connor Halliday by the numbers.
- UCLA's Jake Brendel finds himself advising the kids, Chris Foster writes in the Los Angeles Times.
- Ed Orgeron took a spirited approach with USC to energize their play, Helene Elliott writes in the Los Angeles Times.
- Dennis Erickson is keeping two tight end sets for Utah, Lya Wodraska writes in the Salt Lake Tribune.
- The Seattle Times' Jerry Brewer says Oregon's losing streak epitomizes Washington's long climb back to relevance.
- Vince Mayle catches on quickly in his first year at Washington State, Bud Withers writes in the Seattle Times.
- The gang at AthlonSports previews this weekend's Pac-12 games.
- Arizona is eager for a shot at the reeling Trojans, Daniel Berk writes in the Arizona Daily Star.
- ASU hopes playing in Texas helps open up important recruiting grounds, Doug Haller writes in the Arizona Republic.
- Cal tackle Freddie Tagaloa is preparing for UCLA's Anthony Barr, Jeff Faraudo writes in the San Jose Mercury News.
- Colorado's Greg Henderson is on a record pace for interceptions, Kyle Ringo writes in the Daily Camera.
- Oregon's Hroniss Grasu draws on family sacrifice to become a leader, Jason Quick writes in the Oregonian.
- Former offensive lineman Kyle DeVan is finding a fit with Oregon State's tight ends, Lindsay Schnell writes in the Oregonian.
- Special teams is showing up big for Stanford, the AP's Antonio Gonzalez writes.
- UCLA's band of linebackers finds ways to rock opponents, Chris Foster writes in the Los Angeles Times.
- USC is doing an about-face for Thursday night's game, Gary Klein writes in the Los Angeles Times.
- Utah is working on third downs, Lya Woodraska writes in the Salt Lake Tribune.
- Washington's Keith Price is practicing well despite an injured thumb, Adam Jude writes in the Seattle Times.
- Sean Mannion's improvement will test Washington State, Jacob Thorpe writes in the Spokesman-Review.
September, 25, 2013
By Kevin Gemmell | ESPN.com
Pretty much every team plays true freshmen. But how much of an impact are those freshmen having on the game? Through four weeks, some have made immediate impacts. Others have seen some mop-up time. Across the ESPN blogosphere this morning, we’re looking at the five teams in each conference who have had freshmen make the greatest impacts on their team.
1. California: The quarterback is the most important position, and anytime you have a true freshman playing quarterback, it’s going to have a significant impact on the outcome of the game. So far, quarterback Jared Goff has risen to the occasion, even if it hasn’t translated into wins for the Bears. He leads the country in total offense. He’s completing 61 percent of his passes (103-of-168) and has seven touchdowns to four interceptions. Goff is one of seven true freshmen who have seen time for the Bears. Running back Khalfani Muhammad is tied for second on the team with 21 carries (97 yards, one touchdown).
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty ImagesCal signal-caller Jared Goff is off to a big start in his career.
2. UCLA: The Bruins have played 16 true freshmen so far, which, as of last week, was second in the country only to Texas A&M. Linebacker Myles Jack has had the biggest impact with 14 tackles, including two for a loss and a team-high four pass breakups. They are also getting good production from Eddie Vanderdoes, who had two tackles for a loss against New Mexico State, and offensive lineman Alex Redmond has started all three games at guard.
3. USC: The Trojans have gotten impact performances on both sides of the ball from their freshmen. Seven have seen the field for the Trojans. Safety Su’a Cravens has been as advertised so far with 18 tackles, half a tackle for a loss, and an interception. With Silas Redd out, running back Justin Davis has supplemented Tre Madden nicely. In four games, Davis has rushed for 189 yards and two touchdowns, averaging 47.2 yards per game and a team-high 5.9 yards per carry.
4. Washington State: The Cougars have gotten quality -- not necessary quantity -- out of their true freshmen. They have only played four. But two of them are getting quality playing time and making significant contributions. Cornerback Daquawn Brown made his first career start against USC and posted a team high 11 tackles while breaking up two passes. He also had an interception against Southern Utah. Wide receiver River Cracraft is fourth on the team with 10 catches for 111 yards.
5. Colorado: The Buffs aren’t going as young as they did last year, but they are still getting production from their rookies. And they have found something special in linebacker Addison Gillam. Through two games he’s the Buffs leading tackler with 20 stops -- including a sack, two tackles for a loss and five stops on third down. He also blocked a punt. Defensive end Jimmie Gilbert should also continue to see time. In 64 snaps he has three tackles and a sack.
These guys have been impactful, but chances are their teams would still have had success if they weren’t on the field based on quality of competition and/or depth at a position. But their contributions shouldn’t be overlooked.
- Oregon TE John Mundt: Five catches for 121 yards and two touchdowns.
- Oregon RB Thomas Tyner: 12 carries for 80 yards and three touchdowns.
- Arizona LB Scooby Wright: 13 tackles, three for a loss.
- Oregon State KR Victor Bolden: 19 returns, 365 yards, 19.2 average.
- Utah LS Chase Dominguez: Haven’t heard his name before? Good. You shouldn’t. He’s a long snapper.
- Arizona State K Zane Gonzalez: Has converted 4 of 7 field goals with a long of 40 and is 3-4 inside 40 yards. 13 of 13 on PATs.
- Washington KR John Ross: Six kick returns for 112 yards (18.7 average). Three punt returns for 16 yards (5.3 average).
You don't ask to be part of G.I. Joe. You get asked.
- Some Arizona notes, including a possible suspension for Ka'Deem Carey for his offseason incidents.
- Todd Graham has been a winner wherever he's gone.
- A Cal podcast talking about the upcoming game against Northwestern.
- For now, Sefo Liufau is Colorado's backup plan.
- Is LB/DE Tony Washington the key to Oregon winning a national championship?
- Some more on Sean Mannion being named the starter at Oregon State.
- Some Stanford notes, including an update on the position battle at center.
- Not a lot of surprises on UCLA's depth chart.
- USC has picked its captains and awarded scholarships to some walk-on players.
- Utes' inexperienced secondary prepping for a dual-threat quarterback.
- Some highlights from Steve Sarkisian's press conference.
- A first look at Washington State versus Auburn.