Competition wide open in USC backfield

The superstar factor is decidedly down at USC, but the Trojans head into next season expecting to contend.

Originally Published: March 3, 2006
By Ted Miller | Special to ESPN.com
USC defensive end Lawrence Jackson makes the extraordinary comment with such nonchalance that it nearly doesn't register.

He's talking about the USC dynasty reloading -- not rebuilding -- after nearly winning an unprecedented third consecutive national title, and he is intimating future days of woe for all who doubt the Trojans.

Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty ImagesAlthough USC won't start the season at No. 1, Pete Carroll and the Trojans expect to contend.
"It was the same a few years ago when we won the Orange Bowl with Carson Palmer," Jackson said. "Then it was: 'How do you replace a Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback?' Now it's: 'How do you replace two Heisman Trophy winners?'"

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