USC Now mailbag: Quarterbacks, spring practice and recruiting

USC Now mailbag: Quarterbacks, spring practice and recruiting
USC quarterback Cody Kessler looks to pass against UCLA back in November. (Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)

[Cody] Kessler, [Max] Browne and [Ricky] Town are basically drop back quarterbacks. What was the reason for recruiting Jalen Greene and Sam Darnold? I personally would rather have the latter two because now it becomes an 11-on-11 game rather than a 10-on-11. As we've seen with Arizona State or Oregon, you can have three- and four-star players and still win because now defenses have to account for the quarterback.

-- Pete Mota

Arizona State and Oregon had dual-threat quarterbacks, but Alabama and Florida State were in the College Football Playoff and ran systems more comparable to pro-style offenses.

Last season, Kessler operated out of the shotgun the majority of the time.

USC Coach Steve Sarkisian’s recruitment of quarterbacks raises questions about the future of the offense.

Greene and Darnold are more mobile. Town is a pocket passer.

I don't think it will be clear which style quarterback Sarkisian prefers until after next season, when Kessler graduates.

For someone just cluing in to the upcoming season, what are the top things we should know and watch for?

-- Stephen Job, @Stephen_Job

USC's defense will be interesting to follow.

Defensive lineman Leonard Williams and linebackers Hayes Pullard and J.R. Tavai leave holes to fill in the front seven and the secondary will be young.

On offense, Kessler must develop chemistry with young receivers and a reliable tailback must emerge.

USC's ability to finish games will also be something to watch.

Do u have schedule of USC spring practices and date of spring football game

-- Tim Scranton

USC will begin spring practice on March 3 and the spring game is scheduled for April 11.

I'd like to know if Pete Carroll's involved in the recruiting process. Does USC use him to help sway recruits the Trojans' way?


I don't think Pete Carroll has any direct involvement in USC's recruiting.

However, when recruits speak about USC, it is inevitable that they talk about the Trojans’ national championships and standout players -- especially Reggie Bush -- during the Carroll era.

In recruiting, Carroll's accomplishments seem to be the gift that keeps on giving.

Questions about USC? Email me at or tweet @LindseyThiry and I will respond to select messages in a future mailbag.