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Practice Report: Lincoln Riley, USC Football Gearing Up For Nationally Televised Spring Game

Apr 19, 2022

The anticipation for USC's spring game builds as the Trojans finished their final padded practice on Howard Jones Field Tuesday (April 19).

"Another very physical day," head coach Lincoln Riley said of his team's 13th practice. "Proud of the guys that have been able to get through the whole spring with a lot of great physicality, great effort."

Next up, the Trojans will complete their last NCAA-mandated practice in no pads Thursday (April 21) and rehearse for the team's nationally televised spring game.

Riley noted that there are two main goals for Saturday. First, he explained, the Trojans must understand the significance of playing in a venue like the Coliseum.

"Any chance that you get to walk in there with all the greats that have been on that field," Riley said, "you better appreciate it and set a tone and a standard for what football should look like on that field."

Riley also stressed the importance of relying on the preparation and work USC has put in this spring. He explained how if the team is not careful, the fanfare that comes with a nationally televised spring game could become a distraction.

"We don't need guys that start to do their own thing, lose sight of all of the progress we've made," Riley said. "[It's about] trusting all that we've done, putting it on display Saturday, and that'll be enough."

Things to note from USC's 13th practice of spring

  • Riley didn't reveal the full format for the team's spring game, but did share that it will feature offense versus defense. The head coach explained that USC's roster is not big enough at the moment to feature two full squads.
  • Riley also shared three things that he will be watching closely on Saturday:
    • The team's ability to tackle in live situations
    • Whether the team can avoid dumb penalties
    • The tight end position group
      • "I feel like they've made a little bit of a jump here in the last week or so. So hopefully they can certainly carry that over."
  • Sophomore Miller Moss shared that he values Lincoln Riley's detailed eye when it comes to his work with the quarterbacks this spring. Moss also noted how impressive it is to watch the head coach teach his offensive schemes.
    • "Purely his plays," Moss said with a smile. "Sometimes I'm sitting in meetings and I'm like, 'Wow, I don't know how he thinks of this stuff.'"
  • Running back Austin Jones gave a preview of what USC fans should expect from the team's offense in the fall.
    • "Explosive, very explosive," Jones said. "There's going to be a lot of plays made. We're going to put up a lot of points, most definitely without question."
  • Offensive line coach Josh Henson evaluated his position group's progress with just two practices left in camp.
    • "I think we're where we need to be for the end of spring football," Henson said. "We still have some work to do to be ready, game-ready. And that work is really just consistency and execution. But overall, I'm pleased with where we're at. I feel like we're all within striking distance for sure."
  • Quarterback Caleb Williams shared that the team watched a clip of Tom Brady during their film session, which reinforced what USC's coaches are trying to establish within the football program.
    • "It was big on competing with your teammates and not leaving it up to the coaches," Williams explained. "Elite teams are led by players. Good teams are led by coaches. And we're trying to be elite."
  • Offensive lineman Justin Dedich shared what it's like for him to essentially play the role of USC's "sixth man" upfront.
    • "It's kind of been my motto for my career here: just be where I'm needed and where I'm called upon and do my best," Dedich said. "I'm excited they gave me a shot at first team right guard. I'll still rotate center, left guard, wherever they need me. I love doing that."

Tuesday's Gold Plate Members

  • Kyron Ware-Hudson 
  • Jac Casasante 
  • Adonis Otey 
  • Mason Murphy
  • Max Gibbs
  • Brandon Pili 
  • Jamar Sekona
  • Earl Barquet
  • Grant Zane

Tuesday's media availability

Save the Date

Fans' first chance to see the Trojans this spring will be at USC's Spring Game on April 23.

New numbers to know


0 - WR Terrell Bynum

2 - WR Brenden Rice

4 - WR Mario Williams

6 - RB Austin Jones

8 - WR CJ Williams

13 - QB Caleb Williams

26 - RB Travis Dye

70 - OL Bobby Haskins


1 - CB Domani Jackson 

2 - EDGE Romello Height

6 - CB Mekhi Blackmon 

21 - CB Latrell McCutchin

31 - DL Tyrone Taleni

53 - ILB Shane Lee 

97 - DT Earl Barquet