USC tailback back Javorious Allen was not going to let a shoulder bruise slow him down.
Two days after being removed from a scrimmage because of the injury, Allen was back on the field for the Trojans’ Friday morning practice, which was conducted without pads. The Trojans were scheduled to practice in full pads Friday night.
“Everybody plays with a little pain,” Allen said. “It’s part of my game. I’ve got to sacrifice myself for my team out here to make each other better.
“I feel like if I’m not practicing, I feel like my linebackers are not getting better and our defense is not getting better. I’m trying to make everybody better.”
Allen’s work ethic helped him stay motivated when he was low on the depth chart for much of his first three seasons. He got his opportunity midway through last season when Ed Orgeron took over as interim coach and other tailbacks suffered injuries. Allen wound up as the team’s leading rusher and most valuable player.
But Allen dismissed the notion that as a proven player he could sit out.
“I hate missing practice,” he said. “I hate not being on the field with my teammates.”
USC quarterback Cody Kessler avoided a potentially serious knee injury during the scrimmage and practiced Friday.
He said Allen had worked too hard to give up his spot.
“He never wants anyone to have a chance to say, ‘Oh well, he’s taking himself out. Let them take it from him,’” Kessler said.
“If someone is going to take it from him they’re going to have to [work] as hard as they can. Buck’s a really tough guy.”