And The Envelope Please: Matt Barkley Is USC's Starting QB

Doug UrschelCorrespondent IAugust 28, 2009

On August 23, 2009, I wrote an article for b/r.  I titled it The Smart Play Would Be To Start Matt Barkley.  I explained why in the article.

Most people believed Arron Corp was going to be the starting quarterback (QB) for USC. 

I didn't and I'll tell you why.

Arron Corp was recruited by USC during the time that John David Booty (JDB) was the QB.  JDB was a two year filler until Mark Sanchez could prepare to take over the helm. 

Sanchez was a former high school "Player of the Year" and had a cannon for an arm.  That is something that JDB never had.  The passing game fell off after Leinart, but Pete Carroll gave JDB every chance to prove himself.  

It got to the point where Carroll just wanted JDB to manage the game.

During the JDB years, Carroll kept his eyes on Jimmy Clausen and Matt Barkley.  Clausen chose to attend Notre Dame.

There was going to be a break of time until Matt Barkley would be at USC.  That was alright, because Mark Sanchez took over for JDB and became the Cisco Kid of the pocket.  

Carroll had recruited two other QBs to come to USC, but one decided the depth chart was a bit too much.

Carroll still had the other recruit (Arron Corp) as a backup to Mark Sanchez.  Mitch Mustain was a nice plus when he transferred from Arkansas.  He wasn't initially in Carroll's plan, but he did end last season as the back-up QB.

No one really expected Mark to be that great in his first year.  It Shocked Carroll to learn that his QB (Sanchez) decided to enter the NFL draft.

Matt Barkley graduated early and attended spring practice at USC.  He even surprised Carroll, who thought that Barkley would be a back-up at the start of spring practice.

Barkley shocked all of the former NFL coaches on Carroll's staff. Corp became the starting QB at the end of spring practice.

Carroll was quick to say that he felt he had to name a starter prior to summer workouts.

Carroll announced that Corp would lead the team through the summer.  Carroll was also very careful to say that the QB position would not be settled until the fall camp.

Pete Carroll is a sharp guy.  No coach today can have the record he does without being good at his job.  That's where "in Pete we trust" comes from.  That can be heard throughout the Los Angeles community.

Just when you think you know more than Carroll, he will take you to the wood shed for a lesson. 

He's slipperier than snot covering a doorknob in the middle of the Sahara Desert in August.  That's not only slippery, but rough to imagine.

Pete Carroll has been a guest speaker at top corporations in Los Angeles to the Pentagon.  They all want him to speak on his "Win Forever" philosophy. 

The "Win Forever" signs are all over Los Angeles and they are posted behind him at his speeches.  Do any of you believe that he would be starting Barkley if he wasn't the best QB for the Trojans?

Carroll loves to watch the Superman movie where he reversed time.  Pete's been trying to find out how he can reverse time too.  He needs to know should he ever lose another game.

He's practicing high speed boogie boarding instead of flying like superman did.  This guy is near, at, or beyond the rational stage when it comes to "Win Forever."

He called his wife "Win Forever" instead of her name.  She told him she understood, but really.  However, she is making him take down the "Win Forever" banner above their bed.

Pete Carroll is going to do something that might cause his team to lose? 

This is the reason Barkley is starting and Corp is not.  USC has a NFL style offense.  That means that the QB remains in the pocket and makes short to deep throws.

Barkley is built to do that and Corp is not. 

Corp is a quick look and then take off and run QB.  He is tall and thin.  Barkley is a pocket passer.  He is six feet-three and 225 pounds. 

Barkley has the better arm and doesn't hesitate to connect deep with USC's receivers.

Corp tends to run and slide.  That's the reason he only threw one interception during spring camp.  That also directly opposes what Pete Carroll wants to see in his offense.

Jeremy Bates was the QB coach at Denver before coming to USC.  He doesn't like to watch slip and slide either.  Even the USC receivers want Barkley and they have made that clear.

When has Pete Carroll had a running style QB at USC? 

There was a big, tall, fast, five star QB at USC waiting for a chance to start.  He didn't get it and JDB took off with it.

That QB also took off by transferring to UNLV. 

He was much bigger, much faster, much stronger and plain better than Corp.  Pete Carroll told him to do what he had to do and wished him good fortune.

John Morton is the offensive coordinator at USC.  He was with the New Orleans Saints prior to USC.  Jeremy Bates is the QB coach at USC.  He was with the Denver Broncos prior to USC.   Pete Carroll is Pete Carroll and nothing more needs to be said.

The aforementioned coaches selected Matt Barkley to be the starting QB at USC.

I'm sure not going to question their expertise, let alone Carroll's psychopathic need to win everything in life.

The QB position at USC has been the most prestigious one in college football for sometime.

Pete Carroll's QBs have won two Heisman Trophies.  All are currently in the NFL and three are starting.   A USC second-team QB was drafted by the Patriots.  He had never started a game for USC nor threw a touchdown pass.

He became a starter for the Patriots and now starts for the Chiefs.

Last year's QB only started one year for the Trojans but left early for the NFL.  He was the New York Jets' No. One selection in the draft and No. Five overall.  He signed for $50 mil. for five years, with $28 mil. guaranteed.  

In Pete, we trust.  You should too.


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