The New Linebacker U

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(Photo of Brian Cushing looking to kill somebody by Icon Sports Media)

Check out this article from Len Pasquarelli at ESPN about the success four rookies from USC are having in the NFL this season. Here is an excerpt:

Putting four linebackers into the NFL in one year, all of them rookie starters at one point in the season, and with three of the defenders now regulars with their respective franchises, is a pretty remarkable feat. Then again, Brian Cushing (Houston), Clay Matthews Jr. (Green Bay) Rey Maualuga (Cincinnati) and Kaluka Maiava (Cleveland) all appear to be special players.

The quartet has combined to start 33 games through the first 12 weeks of the season. Cushing, a viable candidate for defensive rookie of the year honors, and Maualuga both have started every contest for their teams. Matthews, the son of former NFL standout outside linebacker Clay Matthews and a one-time walk-on at USC, has started eight games for the Packers, after opening the season as a situational pass-rusher

To read the full article, click here.

Former USC ‘backers standing out [espn]


One thought on “The New Linebacker U

  1. I sure do hope that Carroll and Company haven’t screwed the pooch by starting Barkley.

    His whole spiel that new recruits need just to come in and compete contains the implicit claim that football talent is an objective task, safely measurable by Carroll and Co. Of course, this is not factually true here or anywhere. There is a large amount of guestimation involved in evaluating football talent. Young kids don’t, however, want to hear that and are impressed by Carroll’s promise to play them early.

    Clearly – Barkley has been a debacle for the year. This should not come as a surprise to anyone since he is after all just a young kid. His best days of football are probably ahead of him. It’s certainly not been the first that has been made by the coaching staff whose thinking on an issue can seem obviously wrong and stuck on a false belief to everyone but themselves. There have been others. At RB, McKnight just isn’t what they thought that he could be. Their defensive schemes against option teams at times look obviously wrong-headed.

    None of this matters much, except insofar as the prospective recruits might stop believing Carroll’s spiel. If this happens, we’re in trouble, and we mighty will surely fall on our asses.

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