COLLEGE FOOTBALL DAILY REPORT : USC : Report: Players Took Test Again

USC tailback Delon Washington, who hasn't played since the season's second game while his ACT score was challenged, has taken the test again, the Los Angeles Daily News reported.

The paper, citing an unnamed USC official, reported Washington took the test again Tuesday. Another player, redshirt tight end Ken Cooper, whose score was also challenged, reportedly took the test again Monday.

USC won't comment on the cases, citing privacy laws.

The Times reported Oct. 1 that the two freshmen were under investigation for academic fraud, that ACT officials were trying to determine if someone took their tests for them.


USC's Rob Johnson is among six players selected as finalists for the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, which is presented annually to the nation's top senior quarterback.

The other finalists are Jay Barker of Alabama, Chad May of Kansas State, Steve McNair of Alcorn State, Kordell Stewart of Colorado and Eric Zeier of Georgia.


USC Coach John Robinson said that offensive tackle Tony Boselli is having a monster season. "He's the best offensive lineman in the country," Robinson said of the 6-foot-8, 320-pound senior.

"He sustains his block longer than anyone I ever coached. He's definitely risen his game. He spent a lot of time in the off-season thinking about how good he wanted to be."


USC tailback Shawn Walters, with 788 yards, is on his way to becoming USC's 20th 1,000-yard rusher.

His total projects to 1,351 yards, which would be the most by a Trojan since 1989, when Ricky Ervins ran for 1,395. And Walters would become the first to top 1,000 since Mazio Royster had 1,168 in 1990.

Walters had a career-best 234 yards against Stanford on Oct. 15, then had 76 in two quarters in a 61-0 rout of California on Oct. 22 before reserves began playing.

Largely because of Walters, USC's run offense is significantly improved over recent seasons. The Trojans averaged 115 yards per game in 1992 and 109 last season, but are at 157 this season.


Former Washington State quarterback Drew Bledsoe, who now plays for the New England Patriots, returned to his alma mater last spring and wrote a $150,000 check to the WSU athletic department.

The money will endow a football scholarship and it matches a 1993 contribution made by another former Cougar, Mark Rypien.


Washington State Coach Mike Price, whose team will play USC on Saturday at Pullman, was asked how he let Trojan sophomore quarterback Brad Otton slip away last spring.

After Otton decided to leave Weber State, he first committed to enroll at Washington State.

"I'd previously told my other four quarterbacks I wouldn't recruit any more quarterbacks," Price said.

"I could have gotten out of it on a technicality because we didn't recruit Brad, he just walked in the door. He was going to be a transfer. The day that got out, my office was full of quarterbacks.

"I couldn't do it. A man is only as good as his word. I called Brad and told him it just wouldn't work out.

"I was tempted, though."


From 1927 to 1978, Washington State had a live mascot, a cougar.

The tradition began in 1927, when a Washington governor presented a cougar cub to the university. Students named him Butch, in honor of a WSU football star of the day, Butch Meeker.

In later years, there was a succession of mascots.

Butch VI died in the summer of 1978. The university tried to find a Butch VII, but animal rights activists intervened, ending the tradition.

More College Football: Football fans will find an extensive collection of L.A. Times features, columns and notes on all the college teams on the TimesLink online service.

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