Freshman John Plattenburg switches position for the Trojans

Freshman John Plattenburg switches position for the Trojans

John Plattenburg arrived at USC as a cornerback, but when the Trojans play host to Fresno State on Aug. 30, the freshman will play safety.

Defensive backs coach Keith Heyward said the team is lacking depth at the position and Plattenburg's football IQ has enabled him to make the switch.

"He's got great quickness, good toughness, and he's learned our playbook pretty good," Heyward said.

Plattenburg is taking mostly second team reps in practice, but could be used in the defensive rotation with safeties Su'a Cravens, Gerald Bowman and Leon McQuay.

"I anticipate him playing," Heyward said.

Plattenburg, 5-foot-11, 180 pounds, doesn't have a position preference.

"As long as I can get on the field and play ball, that's all that matters," Plattenburg said.

The biggest challenge for the freshman has been the speed of the game and acclimating to the terminology. "I am just taking it day by day and making the best of it," Plattenburg said.