17 Sep
2020

USC claws past Arizona at home

first_imgMatt Barkley saw a lot of Carson Palmer when the Heisman Trophy winner played for USC in the early 2000s. Growing up in nearby Newport Beach, Barkley, now a junior quarterback for the Trojans, remembers Palmer’s 2002 season, the year he won the award while throwing for 3,942 yards and 33 touchdowns.Record breaking · Junior quarterback Matt Barkley threw for 468 passing yards Saturday aternoon against Arizona in USC’s 48-41 victory, besting Carson Palmer’s nine-year record of 448 passing yards. – Luciano Nunez | Daily TrojanOn Saturday, in front of a crowd of 63,707 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Barkley shattered the former Trojan signal caller’s single-game record for passing yards with 468 of his own. Along with four touchdown passes, Barkley’s record-setting display helped lead USC (4-1, 2-1) to a narrow 48-41 victory over Arizona just one week after the team’s first loss of the season at Arizona State.“It’s crazy because I remember looking up to Carson Palmer and he’s one of my heroes,” Barkley said. “I did want to be in his shoes.”The offensive outburst, the most points USC has scored in a game this season, was needed to stave off a Wildcats team (1-4, 0-3) that also moved the ball successfully, scoring four second-half touchdowns. Behind its own seasoned signal caller in senior Nick Foles, who completed 41-of-53 pass attempts, Arizona outscored USC 29-21 in the final two quarters.“That’s a great team with some great receivers,” USC coach Lane Kiffin said of the Wildcats.For the second week in a row, USC’s defense surrendered more than 40 points, allowing 554 yards of total offense before nearly relinquishing a late two-touchdown lead. The Trojans also allowed Arizona to convert 37 first downs, the most in school history.Photo courtesy of Luciano Ninez“They went down the field a bit too easy in the second half,” Kiffin said. “We just need a full defensive game.”Leading 48-34 with less than two minutes remaining in the game, USC opted to try and convert a fourth-and-one play from its 47-yard line, but Barkley’s pass to senior wide receivers Brandon Carswell was incomplete, giving the Wildcats, who scored six plays later on a four-yard touchdown pass from Foles to freshman wide receiver Austin Hills, a shorter field.“You have the opportunity to put the game away,” Kiffin said of the decision not to punt. “We’re going to believe in our players.”But in the first half, the Trojans defense, which had forced just three interceptions all season, looked slightly different, as evidenced by its two interceptions of Foles, who had a touchdown-to-interception ratio of 10:0 prior to Saturday’s game.With 7:19 remaining in the first quarter, junior safety T.J. McDonald intercepted Foles when a pass sailed over the middle of the field.Minutes later, on the next Arizona drive after a 46-yard field goal from freshman kicker Andre Heidari gave USC a 10-0 lead, Foles was picked off by McDonald again.“To get them early changed the momentum of the game,” McDonald said. “It pumped up the team and they were able to go put points on the board.”Photo courtesy of Luciano NunezThree plays later, Barkley connected with freshman wide receiver Marqise Lee on a 38-yard touchdown pass, ballooning USC’s lead to 17. The Trojans would go on to score again in the second half on another Barkley pass, his third of the game.“They just sat back and gave us a lot of routes,” Barkley said. “And across the board, I had protection.”The defense also limited Arizona to just two scores in the first half despite 227 yards of total offense.“I was just happy with the turnovers,” Kiffin said. “It was good to see.”But the offense, which finished just 18 yards shy of 600 total yards, outshined whatever noteworthy plays the defense made.In addition to Barkley’s performance, sophomore wide receiver Robert Woods finished with 14 receptions for 255 yards and two touchdowns. Similarly, his high school teammate, freshman wideout Marqise Lee totaled 144 receiving yards and one touchdown on eight catches.Photo courtesy of Luciano Nunez“[Barkley’s] putting the ball on the money, on point every time,” Woods said. “He’s making it really easy on us because he puts it right where it needs to be.”Equally, Woods and Lee have made it easy on Barkley. Of his 32 completions, 22 went to Woods and Lee.“I’ve played with him since high school, and it’s exciting to see him grow,” Woods said of Lee. “I’m real proud of him.”Despite a young offensive line that looked particularly young a week ago in the Trojans’ 43-22 loss to Arizona State, Barkley was not sacked once against the Wildcats.“Our line was a huge component because of the protection,” Barkley said of the unit, which on average is allowing less than one sack per game. “I didn’t get touched once, except when I rolled out of the pocket. They were huge.”Photo courtesy of Luciano NunezWith the Trojans heading into a bye week before an Oct. 13 contest against California at AT&T Park in San Francisco, most players appear content with the win — at least for now.“In a sense, it is what it is,” freshman linebacker Dion Bailey said in the moments following the game. “We’ll take our wins.”last_img read more

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16 Sep
2020

Syracuse aims to improve its highly-touted goalkeeping with new coach

first_img Published on January 29, 2018 at 10:50 pm Contact Michael: mmcclear@syr.edu | @MikeJMcCleary At a recent Syracuse practice, goalkeepers and position players separated to different parts of the field. Goalies Hannah Van Middelem and Bri Stahrr walked to the side and attached velcro ankle weights to their lower legs. They started jumping rope as Asa Goldstock fielded shots in the net.In the past, SU head coach Gary Gait would assume the duties of warming the goalkeepers, but this year the Orange brought in a fresh but familiar face.“Regy’s with the defense and Gait’s with the offense,” Goldstock said. “So, we thought we should have a coach for the goalies.”Following a season in which the Orange tied its earliest exit from an NCAA tournament, losing in the first round for the first time since 2006, Gait said the Orange had to “reevaluate” a lot of things, coaching staff included. In preparation for what SU hopes to be an improved season, the Orange hired Matt Palumb to be the goalkeepers coach moving forward. The job used to be allocated among Gait and graduate assistants, but now Palumb assumes the title.“It’s amazing to have his experience,” Gait said. “We’re definitely going to use his ability to help two of the top goalies in the last two recruiting classes.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe Orange is now the only team in the Atlantic Coast Conference with a coach that is solely focused on the development of its goalkeepers. No other school has a specific goalkeeper coach listed on the roster. Palumb, who is not currently named on Syracuse’s official roster, is expected to be added sometime in the near future, per a team spokeswoman.Palumb is familiar with success in net. He started in goal for Syracuse during the 1987-90 seasons, the same years that Gait played for Syracuse. Over that span, SU won two-consecutive national titles and Palumb was named an All-American in his final year. In addition to his experience as a player, Palumb has served on the Syracuse administrative staff since 2006 as an assistant athletics director for donor relations. Palumb was not made available to the media.Gait, who is one of the greatest Syracuse players of all time, earned all his success with his offensive prowess as an attack, which benefits the development of the offense. Assistant coach Regy Thorpe led the Orange to a national title in 1992 as an All-American member of the defense, which benefits the defenders. But, there was belief from SU that it needed an extra eye on the last line of defense.“Everything in the book, it’s been worked on,” Goldstock said. “It was something that we really needed.”Although Goldstock added that Gait still likes to take shots on her in practice and takes over if Palumb doesn’t attend practice, Palumb has been her “go to” for anything related to her position.Van Middelem, a freshman, said in high school she had a coach who worked a little bit with the goalies, but none that worked this closely and this often with them. She added that she didn’t find another school during her recruiting search that emphasized individual development of goalkeepers by way of a coach specialized with the position.The Orange goalkeepers meet with Palumb “at least four times a week,” Van Middelem said, both on and off the practice field. The goalies go through all their workouts with Palumb, Goldstock said, and jumping rope has been one of their bigger emphases early on in the practice season.In the future, Van Middelem expects the presence of a coach for that purpose to make SU a much more attractive destination for top goalie recruits.“A lot of programs don’t really focus on their goalies,” Van Middelem said. “When you do, that makes a difference.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

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