LOS ANGELES -- USC's redshirt-freshman tight end combination of Xavier Grimble and Randall Telfer began the 2011 season with a forgettable performance against Minnesota, combining for 20 yards on three receptions. More importantly, and certainly more memorably, both had significant dropped passes during the game, including one by Grimble that seemingly crushed any offensive momentum the Trojans had built.
One week later, both players still are freshmen, but it's clear they've matured. Grimble caught five passes for 66 yards and was responsible for USC's lone receiving touchdown against Utah, while Telfer chipped in with two catches for 28 yards. In typical fashion, the Trojans looked to get quarterback Matt Barkley out of the pocket occasionally, allowing tight ends to drag across the formation, which resulted in open looks. This time around, the talented youngsters were able to capitalize.
"Now we're getting that feeling we all had in high school -- that confidence and swagger," Grimble said. "That's what it's about. I think that's everything. This week I really focused on trusting myself."